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RAW COTTON 



AND 



COTTON LINTERS 



U 



-J 



. i 



A Report by the Subcommittee for Economic Study 



RAILROAD COMMITTEE FOR THE STUDY OF TRANSPORTATION 



-.338.1735/ 



ASSOCIATION OF AMERICAN RAILROADS 

1944 



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Copyright 1944 by 

Association of American Railroads 

Washington, D. C. 



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of aUflnfca 
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RAW COTTON 

AND 

COTTON 



RAILROAD COMMITTEE FOR THE STUDY OF TRANSPORTATION 

Subcommittee for Economic Studo, 



FOREWORD 

THIS report on raw cotton is the initial production of Group 8, in 
charge of Mr. W. L. Taylor, with headquarters at Washington. It 
is to be followed by similar reports on wool and mohair, raw silk, syn- 
thetic fibers, textiles of all kinds having commercial importance, and leather. 
When complete, the work of this group should entirely cover the field of 
garment and other fabrics, from raw material to consumption outlets. 

The comments and conclusions of the report necessarily are somewhat 
preliminary. Cotton has no usefulness except as a raw material for vari- 
ous manufacturing processes. Therefore, its prospects after the war cannot 
be definitely estimated until we are able to complete our study of the 
textile industry. On the other hand, the amount, location and cost of 
supplies of raw cotton so intimately affect the economics of the textile 
industry that we believe cotton should precede textiles on the program 
for this group. 

The textile study is already well under way. When completed, the com- 
ments and conclusions on raw cotton possibly may need to be revised. 

The cotton-growing industry is a highly important segment of our 
national economy. Many railroads are intimately concerned with the wel- 
fare of this industry and its corollary business activities. To these railroads 
in particular— but, as well, to all railroads in some measure— certain 
questions raised and discussed in this report respecting the future of the 
cotton-growing industry will have considerable significance for their own 

future. 

Subcommittee for Economic Study 

April 5, 1944. 

Printed, November 15, 1944. 



Ill 



TABLE OF CONTENTS 

Page 

IV-VI Table of Contents 

VII-XI List of Tables, Illustrations, Maps and Charts 

XII-XIII Conclusions and Reasons Therefor 

XIII-XVIII Part I, Summary 

Part II, Supporting Data, as follows: 

CHAPTER I — Introduction and History 

2 Historical Summary 

2 Importance of Cotton 

3 Description of Cotton 

3 Compression of Bales 

4 Major Types of Cotton 

4 World Cotton Production 

7 Maps for American Cotton 

CHAPTER II — Cotton Production in United States 

14 Producing Area 

14 Farms, Farmland and Cottonland 

15 Cottcn Farms 

16 Size of Farms 

17 Cropland and Cotton Acreage Harvested 

18 Farm Operators 
18 Acreage 

20 Yield Per Acre 

21 Reduction from Full Yield Per Acre 
23 Commercial Fertilizer Used on Cotton 
23 Production 

25 Rank In and Quantity of Production 

28 Farm Income 

29 Ginneries 

29 Bale Covering 

29 Transportation Value of Ties and Bagging 

29 Ginning Season 

29 Cottonseed 

CHAPTER III— Cotton Marketing 

32 Channels of Marketing 

32 Distribution from Gin Points 

32 Compress— Concentration — Warehousing 

32 Definition of Grade 

33 Grade Names 

33 Distribution of American Upland Cotton, By Grades 

34 Definition of Staple Length 



IV 



1 



Page 

35 Long Staple Cottons 

35 Definition of Character 

37 American-Egyptian Cotton 

37 Grade and Staple 

37 Compresses 

37 Cotton Markets 

38 Local, Country or Primary Markets 
38 Central Concentration Markets 

38 Mill Markets 

38 Export Markets 

38 Spot Markets 

38 Cotton Futures Exchanges 

39 Futures Markets 

39 Tenderable Cotton 

40 Financing the Marketing of Cotton 
40 Prices in Futures Markets 

40 Prices in Central and Other Markets 

40 Price Differences Among Markets 

41 Cotton Prices Received 

42 Distribution of American Cotton 

44 Types of Bales Received by Domestic Mills 

CHAPTER IV— Transportation 

48 Rates 

48 Rates — Southwest 

48 Rates— South 

48 Rates — Mississippi Valley 

49 Rates — Southeast and Carolinas 

49 Movement via various Transportation Agencies 

50 Importance of Cotton to the Railroads — General 

52 Importance of Cotton Traffic to the Railroads — Southwestern 

Region 

53 Importance of Cotton Traffic to the Railroads — Southern 

Region 

53 Railway Tonnage Compared with Production 

CHAPTER V— Consumption 

58 World Consumption 

59 Uses of Cotton 

59 Domestic Consumption 

61 Cotton Processing Tax 

64 Foreign Cotton 

64 Consumption in New England and in Cotton States 

64 Consumption by States 

66 Per-Capita Consumption 

68 Cotton Production and Consumption in the United States 

68 Production and Consumption in Cotton-Growing States 

69 Production and Consumption in Georgia 



Page CHAPTER VI — Exports and Imports 

72 World Cotton Exports and American Cotton Exports 

74 United States Exports, by Countries of Destination and 

by Customs Districts 

75 Packaging Methods, Export Cotton 
75 Value of Cotton Exports 

75 United States Imports of Cotton 

CHAPTER VII — Supply and Distribution 

78 World Supply, Demand and Carry-over 

79 Domestic Supply, Demand and Carry-over 

CHAPTER VIII— Cotton Linters 

82 Description of Linters 

82 Uses of Linters 

82 Grade, Color and Staple Lengths 

82 Production, Consumption and Exports 

82 Production by States 

85 Prices of Linters 

85 Value of Production 

86 Importance of Linter Traffic and Revenue 
86 Transportation — General 

86 Transportation — Southern Region 

86 Transportation — Southwestern Region 

87 Rates 

87 Consumption Compared with Production 

87 Consumption by States 

87 Exports 

88 Exports by Countries of Destination' 
88 Imports 

CHAPTER IX — Conclusions and Comments 

90 Future Demand for Cotton 

90 Estimated Crop Needs 

91 Estimated Tonnage for Movement 

91 Collateral Problems Affecting the Railroads 

APPENDIX — Summary of Pertinent Federal Laws 

94 Cotton Futures Act, 1916 

94 Cotton Standards Act, 1923 

94 Agricultural Marketing Act, 1929 

94 Agricultural Adjustment Act, 1933 

95 Bankhead Cotton Act, 1934 

95 Commodity Exchange Act, 1936 

95 Agricultural Adjustment Act, 1938 

GLOSSARY 

98 "Acreage" to "Export Market" 

99 "Farm" to "Mozambique" 

100 "Price, Parity" to "Yield" 



VI 



Table 

I 

II 


Page 
3 

5 


III 


7 


IV 


14 


V 


15 


VI 


16 



LIST OF TABLES 

Description of American Cotton Bales. 

World Cotton Production, United States and 
Foreign, by years, 1909-1942. 

Cotton Production, World and in Leading Coun- 
tries, by Decades, 1910-1930 and 1937. 

Cotton Production in the United States, by 
Types of Cotton and Types of Bales, by 
years, 1909-1942. 

Number of Farms and Farm Population, Unit- 
ed States and Cotton States, 1930 and 1940. 

All Farms and Cotton Farms, United States 
and Cotton States, and Per cent Cotton 
Farms of all Farms, 1930 and 1940. 

VII 16 Average Size of All Farms and Ratio of Cotton 

Farms to All Farms, United States and 
Cotton States, 1930 and 1940. 

VIII 17 Cropland and Cotton Acreage Harvested, Unit- 

ed States and Cotton States, 1930 and 1940. 

IX 18 Number and Color of Farm Operators, United 

States and Cotton States, 1940. 

X 19 Acreage Harvested, Yield Per Acre and Pro- 

duction, United States, by Years, 1909-44. 

XI 20 American Upland Cotton, Acreage Harvested, 

Yield Per Acre, and Production, United 
States and Cotton States, by Decades 
from 1910. 

XII 21 Cotton Yield Per Acre, United States and Cot- 

ton States, by Decades from 1910. 

XIII 23 Total Amount of Commercial Fertilizer Used 

and Amount Applied Per Acre When Used 
on Cotton, United States, by Years, 1922-44 

XIV 25 Total Cotton Ginnings in the United States, 

Percentage of Total Ginnings, and Rank in 
Production by Ginnings, in Each State, by 
Decades from 1910. 

XV 26 Production : Ginnings of Cotton, United States, 

by States, by Years, 1909-1943. 

XVI 27 Production East and West of Mississippi River 

at Five- Year Intervals From 1910 and for 
Selected States 1910 and 1940. 



VII 



Table 


Page 


XVII 


28 


XVIII 


30 


XIX 


30 


XX 


33 


XXI 


34 



XXII 



XXIII 



XXIV 



XXV 



35 



37 



41 



42 



XXVI 


44 


XXVII 


45 


XXVIII 


49 


XXIX 


49 


XXX 


50 



Income from Farm Marketings and From Cot- 
ton, and Total Income Payments, United 
States and Cotton States, 1935. 

Cotton Ginnings in the United States, by Pe- 
riods, 1910 and 1940. 

Distribution of Gross Revenue from Cottonseed 
in the United States, 8- Year Total, 1927-34. 

Official Standards for Grade of American Up- 
land Cotton. 

Color and Grade of American Upland Cotton; 
Percentages White Grades Are of All 
Grades, and Middling Grade or Better Is 
of All Grades, in United States and Indi- 
vidual Cotton States, for Selected Years 
from 1928 to 1942. 

Percentage 29/32" or Shorter Staple American 
Upland Cotton Is of All Lengths, United 
States and Cotton States, for Selected 
Years, from 1928 to 1942. 

Number of Cotton Compresses and Those Hav- 
ing High Density Facilities, by States, 
1937. 

Spot Prices Per Pound for Middling Cotton at 
Ten Designated Markets, 5- Year Intervals, 
from 1915. 

Average Season Price for Cotton Received by 
Farmers and Average Spot Price at Ten 
Designated Markets for Middling Grade, 
also annual average Parity Price of Cot- 
ton, by Years, 1915-1943. 

Primary Distribution of American Cotton, by 
States, Season 1932. 

Types of Bales Received by Domestic Cotton 
Mills, by States, Season 1930. 

Distribution of Receipts of Raw Cotton at Spe- 
cified Ports, by Method of Transportation, 
Seasons 1931 and 1932. 

Cotton Receipts at Houston by Truck and Rail, 
by Years, 1932-1939. 

Receipts of Cotton at New Orleans by Various 
Methods of Transportation, and Percent- 
age Distribution, by Years, 1936-1942. 



VIII 



Table 
XXXI 



XXXII 



XXXIII 



XXXIV 



XLV 



XLVI 



Page 
51 



52 



53 



58 



XXXV 


59 


XXXVI 


61 


XXXVII 


62 


XXXVIII 


65 


XXXIX 


65 


XL 


66 


XLI 


69 


XLII 


72 


XLIII 


73 


XLIV 


74 



76 



76 



Cotton Handled by Class I Railroads, Traffic 
Statistics, United States, Southwestern Re- 
gion, and Southern Region, 1928, 1933, 
1938 and 1942. 

Cotton Tonnage Originated by Class I Railroads 
in the United States, Southwestern Region 
and Southern Region, by Years, 1928-1943. 

Cotton Production, Railway Tons Handled, 
Ratio of Tons Handled to Production, and 
Average Season Prices Received By Farm- 
ers, by Years, 1928-1941. 

World Mill Consumption of Cotton, American 
Grown and Foreign Grown, by Years, 
1914-1941. 

Cotton Consumption in the United States Ac- 
cording to Use, 1937 and 1939. 

American Mill Consumption of Cotton Divided 
between American and Foreign Growths, 
by Years, 1914-1942. 

Cotton Consumed by Mills, in the United States 
and by States, by Years, 1909-1943. 

Mill Consumption of Cotton in the United 
States, by Territories, by Years, 1909-1943. 

Cotton Consumed by Mills in Cotton-Growing 
States, by Decades from 1910. 

Cotton and Other Fibers : Estimated Total and 
Per-Capita Consumption, United States, by 
Years, 1911-1942. 

Cotton Produced and Consumed, United States 
and Selected States, by Decades from 1910. 

World Cotton Exports Compared with United 
States Cotton Exports, by Years, 1909-1937. 

Cotton Production and Exports, United States, 
by Years, 1909-1940. 

Exports of Cotton from the United States, by 
Countries of Destination, and by Princi- 
pal Customs Districts, 5-Year Intervals, 
1924-1939. 

United States Total Merchandise Exports Com- 
pared with Cotton Exports, by Years, 
1913-1940. 

Comparison of Total Imports for Consumption 
with Cotton Exports, Selected Years, 
1919-1939. 



IX 



Table 
XL VI I 

XLVIII 



XLIX 

L 

LI 

LII 

LIII 

LIV 



Page 
76 

78 



80 



83 



85 



85 



86 



Cotton Imports to the United States by Coun- 
tries of Origin, by Decades from 1910. 

Commercial Cotton : World Production, Mill 
Consumption, Changes in Carry-Over, and 
Carry-Over at End of Season, by Years, 
1920-1942. 

Cotton Supply and Distribution, United States, 
by Years, 1914-1942. 

Linters Production, Consumption, and Exports 
in the United States, by Years, 1909-1943. 

Production of Linters in the United States, by 
States, by Decades from 1910. 

Weighted Average Prices of Linters in the 
United States, by Years, 1911-1942. 

Value of Cotton Linters Obtained in the United 
States, by Years, 1909-1943. 

Consumption of Linters in the United States, by 
States, by Decades from 1910. 



Facing 
Page 
III 
XVIII 

1 

13 

47 

57 



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS 



Cotton Field in Bloom, near Fresno, California 

Cotton Plant Well Formed. Bottom Crop Beginning to Open. 

Portion of Cotton Plant Showing Blossom, Ripe (Opened) Boll, 

and Green (Unopened) Boll. 
Wagons Delivery Cotton at a Gin. 
Baling Press for Making Gin Bales. 
Cotton Compre?s and Storage Yard. 



LIST OF MAPS 



Map Page 

A 8 Cotton Production, by States, 1939. 

B 9 Cotton Mill Consumption, by States, 1939. 

C 10 Cotton Exports and Coastwise Shipments, by 

States, 1939. 
D 11 Coastwise Receipts of Cotton, by States, 1939. 



LIST OF CHARTS 

Chart Page 

A 6 Cotton Production, by Principal Countries, Se- 

lected Years, 1909-1941. 

B 22 Cotton Yield Per Acre and Production in the 

United States, by Years, 1909-1942. 

C 24 Cotton Acreage Harvested and Production in 

the United States, by Years, 1909-1942. 

D 36 Average Staple Length of American Upland 

Cotton in the United States, for Selected 
Years. 

E 43 Average Season Price for Cotton Received by 

Farmers, and Average Spot Price at Ten 
Designated Markets for Middling Grade 
%" (prior to 1937) and 15 16" (there- 
after). 

F 55 Ratio of Railroad Tons to Adjusted Production 

of Cotton, and Average Season Prices Re- 
ceived by Farmers, by Years, 1928-1941. 

G 60 World Mill Consumption of Cotton, United 

States and Foreign Growths, by Years, 
1914-1941. 

H 63 Cotton, United States Production, Consumption 

and Exports, by Years, 1909-1942. 

I 67 Per-Capita Consumption of Cotton, Wool, Silk, 

and Rayon, United States, Selected Years, 
1911-1940. 

J 84 Cotton Linters : United States Production, Con- 

sumption and Exports, by Years, 1909- 
1941. 



XI 



CONCLUSIONS 

1. Assuming that the war with Germany will 
end early in 1945 and the war with Japan by 1947, 
there probably will be a need for a 12,000,000- or 
13,000,000-bale cotton crop each year through 
1949. After that, this country will need an export 
demand larger than the 1935-39 average annual 
exports of 5,300,000 bales of cotton in order to 
market a crop of this or larger size. 

2. Because the price of American cotton has 
been artificially supported, our cotton is grad- 
ually meeting with increasingly serious competi- 
tion. After the close of the war American cotton 
will have much difficulty meeting competition from 
other cottons in world markets and from syn- 
thetic fibers in this country unless its price is 
quickly and substantially reduced or unless it is 
subsidized. 

3. Subject to normal weather conditions, it is 
estimated that there will be available for move- 
ment by all forms of transportation in the first 
normal postwar year and for the succeeding two 
or three years approximately 12,500,000 bales, 
equivalent to 3,125,000 tons of cotton. The origin 
and termination of this traffic should be as fol- 
lows: 

Tons (000 omitted) 

ORIGINATE 

Virginia '_ g 

North Carolina 162 

South Carolina 187 

Georgia 225 

Alabama 233 

Florida 5 

Tennessee 125 

Mississippi 475 

Total South 1,420 

Louisiana 150 

Arkansas 375 

Oklahoma 175 

Missouri 100 

Texas 70 o 

Total Southwest 1,500 

Arizona 50 

California 125 

New Mexico 25 

Total Far West 200 

All Others 5 

Grand Total 3,125 

TERMINATE 

Virginia 60 

North Carolina 710 

South Carolina 550 

XII 



Georgia 500 

Alabama 325 

Tennessee 225 

Mississippi go 

Total South 2,450 

Connecticut 30 

Maine 40 

Massachusetts 150 

New Hampshire 45 

New Jersey 10 

New York 50 

Pennsylvania 10 

Rhode Island 45 

Total East and New England 380 

California 10 

Iilinos 10 

Texas 200 

All Others 75 

Grand Total 3,125 

4. It is useless at this time to try to conjecture 
what might be the situation as to cotton after 1949. 



REASONS FOR CONCLUSIONS 

1. In the 5-year period 1935-39, the United 
States produced an annual average of 12,800,000 
bales of cotton and consumed 6,800,000 bales. Ex- 
port demand was less than the remainder by about 
700,000 bales annually, or by a total of 3,500,000 
bales during the 5-year period. After the war this 
condition of excess supply will recur unless means 
are found to increase the foreign demand for our 
cotton or to expand the outlets for domestic con- 
sumption. 

Since the chances of disposing of a crop of the 
1935-39 average size of 12,800,000 bales after the 
world returns to normal conditions depend upon 
the uncertain prospects of increasing either do- 
mestic use or foreign takings of our cotton, there 
is no reason to believe that production above this 
level would be encouraged or can be expected. On 
the other hand, world need for our cotton for mil- 
itary and postwar-rehabilitation purposes should 
dispose of an annual crop of this size and thereby 
encourage its continued production up to about 
1949. 

2. After 1949 the price of American cotton must 
fall substantially in order for our cotton to com- 
pete in world markets and to meet domestic com- 
petition from synthetic fibers, without benefit of 
subsidies. 

One of our principal competitors for world cot- 
ton trade in the postwar era will be Brazil. Re- 



ports indicate that Brazil has increased its cotton 
acreage from 2,400,000 acres (average 1930-34) 
to 6,700,000 acres in 1940. During the 16-year 
period 1923-38 Middling 15/16" cotton at New 
Orleans averaged 14.98 cents per pound. In the 
same period Brazilian Type 5 (a comparable 
grade) at Sao Paulo averaged 15.51 cents per 
pound. Since Pearl Harbor American cotton has 
been from 6.47 cents to 11.74 cents per pound 
higher than Brazilian cotton. 

On August 1, 1944, the average spot price of 
Middling 15/16" cotton at the 10 designated mar- 
kets was 21.78 cents, compared with 25 cents per 
pound for rayon staple fiber. The Federal Gov- 
ernment has guaranteed for 2 years after peace 
has been proclaimed a price on cotton based upon 
92.5 per cent of parity. Parity on August 1, 1944, 
was 21.8 cents per pound. With a Government- 
supported price of 20 cents or higher after the 
war, American cotton would be unable to meet 
foreign competition in world markets without 
subsidy. 

Rayon staple fiber at 25 cents per pound is al- 
most as cheap as cotton at 21 cents per pound 
when the mill waste of from 10 to 20 per cent in 
cotton is considered. Therefore, cotton cannot fully 
compete with domestic rayon without a price re- 
duction. Rayon production is man-controlled and 
has thus far been without Government price in- 
tervention. It is entirely probable that expanding 
rayon production will cause further price reduc- 
tions, and 1949 may well see a 20-cent price for 
rayon staple fiber. 

There are indications that cotton growers are 
learning to produce cotton more cheaply by more- 
effective use of their more-productive land. Aver- 
age yield per acre for the crop as a whole in- 
creased from 148 pounds in 1930 to 253 pounds 
in 1940. A comparison of the 1940 average yield 
of 749 pounds per acre in California with 576 
pounds in New Mexico, 375 pounds in South Car- 
olina, 240 pounds in Mississippi, 184 pounds in 
Texas and 253 pounds for the Cotton States as a 
whole seems to indicate that the results accom- 
plished in California could be paralleled in other 
states by the same methods. This should substan- 
tially decrease the cost of the cotton. 

3. The conclusions as to the amount of cotton 
available for movement by all forms of transpor- 
tation follow from the reasoning as to crop pro- 



duction. There seems to be no reason to look for 
either much more or much less cotton to be avail- 
able for transportation in the immediate postwar 
years than was offered in 1940, 1941 and 1942. 
Subject to weather conditions, there is reason to 
believe that in the early postwar years the Ameri- 
can cotton crop will approximate 12,500,000 bales. 
The estimate as to the amount of cotton to be 
originated in each state is based upon the cotton 
tonnage produced by states during the 3 years 
1940-42. Similarly, the estimate as to cotton ter- 
minations in each state is based upon the consump- 
tion performance by states during 1940-42. 

4. It is impossible at this time to foresee the 
price of American cotton in relation to foreign 
cotton and to the synthetic fibers after 1949. 
Moreover, it cannot be known now whether the 
Government will continue its artificial support of 
cotton-price levels or will initiate a cotton pro- 
gram of more farseeing helpfulness. The long- 
range future trend of cotton consumption will de- 
pend very largely upon these factors. 



SUMMARY 



Cotton is a basic raw material, and in world 
economy and international necessity it stands next 
to food in significance. 

Importance to Railroads 

Cotton is an important source of traffic and 
revenue to the railroads in the United States, and 
particularly to those in the Cotton Belt, compris- 
ing chiefly the Southern and Southwestern re- 
gions. 

In 1942 there were 227,400 cars of cotton orig- 
inated on Class I railroads in the United States. 
The total cotton revenue in that year was $42,- 
075,000, compared with $39,204,000 in 1928. Aver- 
age revenue in 1942 was $80.39 per car and $3.72 
per ton, compared with $61.32 per car and $5.40 
per ton in 1928. 

In addition to $42,075,000 received by Class I 
railroads from cotton in 1942, they also re- 
ceived $5,900,000 from cotton linters, $1,450,000 
from cottonseed, and $19,900,000 from cotton 
fabrics, in carloads, n.o.s. The last figure greatly 
understates the importance of the traffic, because 
most cotton fabrics move in less-than-carload lots. 
Still further, there are transported annually, about 



XIII 



54,000 tons of steel baling ties and 78,000 tons 
of bagging for covering the bales, plus commercial 
fertilizer for cotton farms to the extent of about 
1,490,000 tons per year. 

The Southwestern Region originated 91,000 
cars and the Southern Region 89,000 cars of cotton 
in 1942. The two regions combined thus originated 
nearly 80 per cent of all the cotton traffic of Class 
I railroads and received about 70 per cent of the 
total cotton revenue in that year. 

Importance in Southwestern Region 

In the 15-year period 1928-42 cotton tonnage 
in the Southwestern Region averaged about 10 
per cent and its revenue averaged 15 per cent of 
the totals for all agricultural products. In 1942 
the tonnage was 11.5 per cent and the revenue 
was 16.4 per cent of the totals for all agricultural 
products. In the same year cotton tonnage and 
revenue were 1.4 per cent and 2.4 per cent, re- 
spectively, of the totals for all carload traffic of 
this region. 

From a revenue standpoint, cotton is the most 
important item of all agricultural traffic to the 
Southwestern Region railroads. In ten of the fif- 
teen years 1928-42 their revenue from cotton was 
greater than that from any other single agricul- 
tural product. The cotton revenue was $12,680,- 
000 in 1942, compared with $20,350,000 in 1928. 

In the same period, 1928-42, cotton revenue in 
most years closely approximated, and in several 
years it was greater than, the revenue from all 
animals and products. The average loading per 
car of cotton for railroads in the Southwestern 
Region has increased from 11.8 tons in 1928 to 
19.6 tons in 1942. 

Importance in Southern Region 

While the Southwestern Region originates more 
cotton tonnage than the Southern Region, cotton 
revenue has been greater in the Southern than 
in the Southwestern Region since 1934. This is 
largely because considerably more cotton termi- 
nates in the Southern than in the Southwestern 
Region. 

In the 15-year period 1928-42 cotton tonnage 
and its revenue averaged more than 11 per cent of 
the totals for all agricultural products. In 1942, 
cotton traffic represented 15 per cent of the rev- 
enue from all products of agriculture and 2 per 
cent of all carload traffic for the region. 



Cotton revenue in the Southern Region has been 
greater than that of any other product of agri- 
culture in 6 of the 15 years 1928-42. Since 1934 
cotton revenue has been greater than that of 
any other agricultural product except in 1937, 
1938, and 1939, when it was exceeded by revenue 
from oranges and grapefruit. Total cotton revenue 
in the Southern Region in 1942 was $16,356,000, 
compared with $12,770,000 in 1928. 

The average loading per car of cotton originated 
on railroads in the Southern Region has increased 
from 9.6 tons in 1928 to 16.3 tons in 1942. 

Rates and Loading 

For many years the railroads maintained only 
any-quantity rates on cotton originating in the 
South and Southwest. On August 29, 1932, car- 
riers in the Southwest and Mississippi Valley 
established carload rates on cotton to retrieve ton- 
nage lost to water carriers and motor trucks. These 
rates were subject to varying minimum weights 
and represented material reductions under the 
any-quantity rates. 

In the Southwestern Region cotton traffic in- 
creased 500,000 tons in 1932 over 1931 and another 
165,000 tons in 1933, although the total cotton 
crop was 16,600,000 bales in 1931 and only 12,700,- 
000 bales in both 1932 and 1933. The cotton crop 
was 5,000,000 bales smaller in 1939 than in 1931, 
but railroads in the Southwestern Region orig- 
inated 144,000 tons more cotton in 1939 than in 
1931. The increase in cotton tonnage was ac- 
complished in 1932 and 1933 in the face of a de- 
crease in tonnage of all agricultural products. The 
cotton tonnage increase can no doubt be attributed 
at least in part to the carload rates. 

Establishment of carload rates on cotton also 
has tended to conserve car supply and has in- 
creased average revenue per car. Southwestern 
Region railroads in 1942 handled 2,910,000 tons 
of cotton in 143,300 cars, which was a reduction 
under 1928 of 7 per cent in tons and 47 per cent 
in cars. The 1942 average loading and revenue per 
car of all cotton handled in the Southwestern Re- 
gion were greater than in 1928 by 9.8 tons and 
$13.71, respectively. Substantially similar results 
were accomplished in the Southern Region. 

Cotton Production 

Cotton is grown in 60 or more countries. Of the 
total, 90 per cent is grown in the United States, 



xiv 



India, China, Russia, Egypt, and Brazil. The 
United States is the largest cotton producer, with 
about 3 times as much as India, the next country. 

Cotton is produced in sufficient quantities to be 
statistically recorded in 16 of the United States, 
extending from southeastern Virginia through 
North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Georgia, 
Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana, Ar- 
kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas, Arizona, and 
New Mexico to California. This is known as the 
Cotton Belt. Our production is made up of 3 types, 
namely, American Upland, Sea Island, and Amer- 
ican Egyptian, of which the Upland type com- 
prises approximately 99 per cent. 

About 13,500,000 people in the United States 
directly depend for at least a substantial part of 
their livelihood on the cotton crop, its distribution, 
and its manufacture. In addition, cotton is the 
most important cash crop in the United States. 
In the Cotton Belt it is the economic mainstay. 

Of $1,763,000,000 received from farm market- 
ings of all crops in the Cotton Belt in 1940, the 
cotton and cottonseed crop was valued at $742,- 
300,000, or 42 per cent of the total. 

Cotton production in the United States reached 
a peak of 18,250,000 bales in 1937. It has exceeded 
10,000,000 bales annually since 1909, with the ex- 
ception of 1921, 1922, and 1934. Average yearly 
ginnings for the period 1909-41 were approxi- 
mately 13,000,000 bales of cotton and 6,000,000 
tons of cottonseed. The corresponding statistics 
for 1941 are 10,495,000 bales of cotton and 4,800,- 
000 tons of cottonseed. Our average annual pro- 
duction during the five years 1935-39 was 12,800,- 
000 bales. 

Cotton Farms 

Cotton is grown on approximately 1,600,000 
farms in the United States. In 1940, the Cotton 
Belt contained 50 per cent of all farms in the 
United States and 54 per cent of the entire farm 
population. In some of these states a large pro- 
portion of the farm land is devoted to cotton pro- 
duction. This was true in 1940 of 89 per cent of all 
farms in Mississippi, 87 per cent in Alabama, 81 
per cent in South Carolina, 77 per cent in Georgia, 
76 per cent in Louisiana, 70 per cent in Arkansas, 
and 65 per cent in Texas. 

Texas outranks all other states in cotton pro- 
duction. It normally produces around 25 per cent 
of the entire American crop. In recent years Mis- 



sissippi has ranked next to Texas, with Arkansas 
and Alabama closely following. 

The cotton year extends from August 1 to the 
following July 31. Cotton is planted in the late 
Spring and early Summer and matures from 4 
to 6 months later. It is usually picked by hand. 
Some progress has been made in the development 
of mechanical cotton pickers, which have been 
used rather successfully in Arizona, California, 
and New Mexico. 

The ginning process separates the seed from 
the lint or fiber. The ratio is usually about one 
pound of lint to two pounds of seed. Approxi- 
mately 84 per cent of the crop is ginned between 
September 1 and December 1. 

Inroads of the boll weavil, beginning about 
1915, caused the abandonment of many Southeast- 
ern cotton farms. The preponderance of cotton 
production shifted from east to west of the Mis- 
sissippi River. In 1910 and 1915, 57 per cent and 
56 per cent, respectively, of the entire cotton crop 
was produced east of the Mississippi River, but 
this fell to 48 per cent and 43 per cent, respec- 
tively, in 1935 and 1940. 

Cotton Acreage 

Cotton acreage harvested in the United States 
reached its peak in 1926, when 47,000,000 acres 
were harvested. It was considerably more than 
40,000,000 acres annually from 1924 through 1931. 
The resulting over-production caused the average 
farm price of cotton to drop in 1931 to less than 
6 cents per pound, the lowest level in history. The 
Federal Government acted to restrict cotton acre- 
age, and sought to raise cotton prices by making 
loans to the farmer, beginning in 1929, on varying 
bases. Acreage has been controlled since the 1933 
season, with the exception of 1936. Cotton acreage 
harvested was 22,200,000 acres in 1941 and 22,- 
600,000 acres in 1942, which means that nearly 
25,000,000 acres have been taken out of cotton 
since 1926. 

Reduction in acreage has not proportionately 
reduced production, because the least-productive 
land was taken out of cotton and the remaining 
acreage was more intensively cultivated and fer- 
tilized. Hence, the yield per acre has increased 
materially. The average yield per acre was 148 
pounds in 1930 and 253 pounds in 1940, an in- 
crease of 58 per cent. 



XV 



Average yield per acre of cotton varies from 
state to state. California is the only state with a 
law whereby only one type of seed (Acala) may 
be planted. In 1940 the average yield per acre in 
California was 749 pounds, contrasted with 375 
pounds in South Carolina, 240 pounds in Missis- 
sippi, 184 pounds in Texas, 190 pounds in Ala- 
bama, and 194 pounds in Louisiana. 

The application of commercial fertilizer to cot- 
ton has increased per acre in recent years. Ap- 
plications were 328 pounds per acre in 1944, com- 
pared with 250 pounds in 1922 and 206 pounds in 
1932. More than half of all fertilizer sold is used 
in the Cotton States ; in fact, in 1940 it amounted 
to two-thirds. 

Cotton Grades 

Cotton is the only farm crop that cannot be 
used until processed. It is ordinarily produced, 
and sold by producers, in small lots of mixed grade 
and staple. Before it is salable to users, it must 
be assembled into uniform or even lots as to grade 
and staple. The average contract of sale is 100 
bales. 

A special study in 1935 showed that 18 per cent 
of the cotton crop was sold by farmers in lots of 
1 bale each and approximately 50 per cent in lots 
of 10 bales or less. Only 6 per cent was sold in 
lots of 100 bales or more. 

Grade of cotton is determined by three factors, 
viz., color, foreign matter, and ginning prepara- 
tion. The color classifications are extra-white, 
white, spotted, tinged, yellow-stained, and gray. 
White grades as a rule comprise about 84 per cent 
of the American Upland crop, Arkansas, Missis- 
sippi and California leading in their production. 

Staple Length 

Length of staple of the cotton fibers is an im- 
portant factor in the quality of yarns and the cost 
of spinning. Of the entire 1928 American Upland 
cotton crop, 44 per cent was longer than 29/32". 
Since then the staple length of Upland has stead- 
ily increased, and cotton longer than 29/32" made 
up 82 per cent of the crop in 1942. In the 5-year 
periods 1928-32, 1933-37, and 1938-42, cotton 
longer than 29/32" represented respectively, 49 
per cent, 59 per cent, and 79 per cent, of the crop. 

Mississippi produces most of the long-staple 
Upland cotton grown in the United States, having 
averaged 57 per cent for the 15-year period 1928- 



42. Arkansas and California rank next, producing 
12 per cent and 11 per cent, respectively. 

Compression 

There are two densities of commercial compres- 
sion for American bales. These are standard and 
high density. As a rule, bales are compressed to 
standard density for interior movement and to 
high density for export or coastwise movement via 
water. 

During the 1937 season there were 367 cotton 
compresses in the United States, of which 266 
had high-density facilities. Of the total, Texas had 
39 per cent, of which four-fifths had high-density 
facilties. Mississippi ranked next with 14 per cent, 
half of them with high-density facilities. 

Marketing 

The marketing of cotton from grower to spin- 
ner or exporter is handled all the way on a cash 
basis. Middling grade 15/16" staple is the basis 
for cotton prices. The value of other grades is 
expressed as so many points "on" or "off" Mid- 
dling 15/16". Prices of cotton in central markets 
generally are used in price analyses. 

Consumption 

Of all cottons consumed in world mills from 
1914 to 1928, American cotton averaged 60 per 
cent. From 1929 to 1939 American cotton aver- 
aged 47 per cent, a reduction of 13 percentage 
points. Consumption of foreign cotton in foreign 
mills has steadily increased, while consumption 
of American cotton has steadily decreased, since 
1928. 

American cotton averaged 98 per cent of the 
total consumed in the United States during the 
30 years 1914 to 1943. Our average annual do- 
mestic consumption of American cotton in the 5- 
year period 1935-39 was 6,800,000 bales. In 1941 
and 1942 it was nearly 11,000,000 bales. 

Mills in the cotton-growing states in 1940 con- 
sumed 85 per cent of our total consumption, com- 
pared with 48 per cent in 1909. Mills in North 
Carolina, Georgia, South Carolina, and Alabama 
consumed 76 per cent of our total 1940 consump- 
tion. 

Per-capita consumption of cotton in the United 
States was 26 pounds in 1911 and 36 pounds in 
1940. The corresponding figures are, for wool, 2.6 
pounds in 1911 and 3.1 pounds in 1940, and for 



XVI 



rayon, .02 pound in 1911 and 3.7 pounds in 1940. 
Silk consumption per capita has not reached 1 
pound in any year since 1911. 

Production Compared With Consumption 

In 1941, the United States consumed 11,170,000 
bales of domestic and foreign cotton, but produced 
only 10,495,000 bales. However, we normally con- 
sume only about 45 per cent of our cotton crop. 
In recent years there has been a production de- 
ficiency in southern states that consume as well 
as produce cotton, notably in Alabama, Georgia, 
North Carolina, and South Carolina. These states 
have had to draw cotton from Mississippi and 
west to supply their needs. 

Exports 

The United States, India, Egypt, Turkey, Bel- 
gian Congo, Iran, Kenya, Uganda, Anglo-Egyp- 
tian Sudan, Russia, China, Argentina, Brazil, 
Peru, and Mexico normally export 95 per cent or 
more of all world exports of cotton. 

The United States is the world's leading cotton 
exporter. India and Egypt rank next. Based on 
the 1934-37 average, the United States exported 
twice as much cotton as India. 

For the 5-year period 1910-14 our cotton ex- 
ports annually averaged 8,944,000 bales, or about 
65 per cent of production. A peak record of 10,- 
927,000 bales was exported in 1926. Since 1934 
our exports have been below 6,000,000 bales, ex- 
cept in 1939 when they were 6,192,000 bales. They 
fell to 3,327,000 bales in 1938 and 1,112,000 bales 
in 1940. Average annual exports during the 5 
years 1935-39 were 5,300,000 bales. 

For many years cotton exported from the Unit- 
ed States has gone principally to the United King- 
dom, Germany, Japan, France, and Italy. 

Value of Cotton Exported 

Since 1913 the value of raw cotton exports has 
on several occasions exceeded 20 per cent of the 
value of all merchandise exports. At times their 
value amounted to 30 per cent of the value of our 
total merchandise imports for consumption. 

Imports 

The United States imports a relatively small 
quantity of cotton from other countries, for spe- 
cial uses. For the period 1930-40 our annual im- 
ports of foreign-grown cotton averaged only 151,- 
000 bales. Most of it comes from India and Egypt. 



World Carry-Over 

World production and consumption were closely 
in balance in 1928, the year preceding the onset 
of the depression. Carry-over at the end of that 
year totaled 10,541,000 bales or approximately 
four months' world consumption. It increased to 
18,336,000 bales on July 31, 1932; to 22,702,000 
bales on July 31, 1938 ; and to an all-time record 
of almost 24,000,000 bales on July 31, 1943. The 
world carry-over at the end of the 1943 season 
was almost a year's supply. 

Domestic Carry-Over 

Until 1928 the carry-over of cotton in the United 
States usually did not exceed the approximate 
equivalent of 6 months' consumption. At the end 
of that year our carry-over was 2,312,000 bales. 
Since then it has been much greater, and on sev- 
eral occasions it was greater than consumption 
during the following year. We had a record carry- 
over of 13,033,000 bales on Aug. 1, 1939. 

Although our 1941 consumption of 11,170,000 
bales was greater than production, our supply was 
more than ample, as we began that year with a 
carry-over of more than 12,000,000 bales. Carry- 
over on August 1, 1942, was 10,640,000 bales. 

Cotton Linters 

Linters are the short fibers not removed from 
the seed at the gin but which must be removed 
before it is pressed for oil. The oil mills run the 
seed through a delinting machine, either once or 
twice. The yield is from 20 to 250 pounds of linters 
from each ton of cottonseed, varying according to 
the staple length of the cotton and the delinting 
method used. Linters are classified according to 
color and length into seven grades. The staple 
length ranges from 5/32" to %". High-grade 
linters are used for spinning low-grade yarns, 
making matresses, pads, upholstery, and surgical 
dressings. The lower grades are converted by the 
chemical industry into guncotton, varnishes, lac- 
quers, and rayon, etc. War always greatly stim- 
ulates the demand for linters, for the manufacture 
of explosives. 

Production of Linters 

Our production of linters has steadily increased 
from 1909, when it was 310,000 bales 1 . During the 



1 All statistical bales of linters are equivalent bales of 
500 lbs. gross weight. 



XVII 



first World War it exceeded 1,000,000 bales per 
year, and for the most part it has consistently 
risen since then. During the 17 years 1925-41 it 
has been below 1,000,000 bales in only 3 years. 
The largest crop was 1,819,000 bales in 1937. 
Production in 1940 was 1,507,000 bales. Among 
factors which may account for the increased pro- 
duction of linters despite lower levels of cotton 
production are the increased demand for linters 
for manufacturing rayon, the discovery of new 
uses for cellulose by the chemical industry, and 
the increased staple length of cotton. 

Texas has been for many years the largest pro- 
ducer of linters, with Mississippi and Georgia 
usually ranking next. In recent years Arkansas 
has moved forward in this respect, and it ranked 
next to Texas in 1940. In that year Texas produced 
335,000 bales, Arkansas 203,000 bales, Mississippi 
196,000, Tennessee 144,000 and Georgia 127,000 
bales. No other state produced as much as 100,- 
000 bales. 

Consumption of Linters 

There is wide variation in the price of linters, 
according to their grade. With but few exceptions 
the annual average price during the period 1911- 
41 has been below 5 cents per pound. The 1942 
average was 4.5 cents per pound. 

While we normally consume in this country 
about 45 per cent of our cotton crop, our consump- 
tion of linters during the 33-year period 1909-41 
averaged 81 per cent of production. In 1938 it 
was 104 per cent, and in 1941 it was 126 per cent. 
To preserve trade and military secrets, the Bureau 
of the Census aggregates some of the states with 
the largest consumption into a single figure for 
"all other states". Of the states for which indi- 
vidual statistics are available for 1941, Texas was 
the largest consumer, with 58,400 bales, or 3.9 
per cent of total. Illinois and California were next, 
with 54,300 bales and 50,000 bales, or 3.7 and 3.4 
per cent of the total, respectively. 

Exports and Imports of Linters 

In 1914 we exported 226,000 bales of linters, 



or 26 per cent of our total production. For the 15 
years 1924-38 we exported 20 per cent of our total 
production. The outbreak of war abroad in 1939 
raised linters exports to 432,000 bales, or 33 per 
cent of the total production. Shipping restrictions 
and national defense requirements caused our ex- 
ports in 1940 to fall to their lowest level— 30,000 
bales, or 2 per cent of the total production. 

In the 15 years 1924-38 Germany imported 
more of our linters than any other country, taking 
from 50,000 to 150,000 bales per year. France and 
the United Kingdom were next in rank, with 
France leading slightly. France's maximum taking 
was 64,000 bales, in 1936, and Great Britain's was 
80,000 bales, in 1938. The Netherlands, Italy, 
Japan and Belgium, in that order, also have used 
substantial quantities of American linters. Their 
combined takings usually were about half those 
of Germany. 

In peacetime years our imports of linters are 
insignificant. In 1936, the first year in which 
linters were reported separately, we imported 53,- 
000 bales. In 1940, reflecting the war demand, 
we imported 247,000 bales, of which 199,000 bales 
came from Brazil, 18,000 from Mexico, and 21,000 
bales from the Argentine. 

Transportation of Linters 

Cotton linters originated by Class I railroads 
in 1942 totaled 37,000 carloads, of which 23,000 
carloads originated in the Southern Region and 
6,300 carloads in the Southwestern Region. Reve- 
nue from cotton linters in the Southern Region in 
1942 was $2,737,000, an increase of $1,500,000 
over 1928. In the Southwestern Region it was 
$1,010,000, an increase of $323,000 over 1928. 

Linters generally move in carload lots in box- 
cars, with an average load per car of 39,000 
pounds. During the period 1933-42, rates in the 
South have been on the basis of 22.5 per cent to 
40 per cent and in the Southwest from 21 per cent 
to 37 per cent, of first-class, according to the car- 
load minimum weight, plus the general increases 
authorized under Ex Parte 115 and 123. 



XVIII 




Southern Railway System 



Cotton crop well formed. Bottom crop beginning to open. 




Illinois Central System 

Portion of cotton plant, showing blossom, ripe (opened) boll, and green (unopened) boll 



Chapter I 
Introduction and History 



Historical Summary 

Cotton 1 is a basic raw material. In world 
economy and international necessity it stands next 
to food in significance. 

The story of cotton dates back to an authentic 
800 B. C, in India. The Spanish conquerors of 
Mexico and Peru found both cotton and cotton 
cloth in those countries. 

The beginnings of the industrial utilization of 
cotton in Europe coincided with the invention in 
1760 of modern principles of spinning and weav- 
ing. This placed a heavy demand on the fields of 
the Orient and the Americas, a production which 
those regions and the Sea Islands off the Carolina 
coast then were unable to supply. 

It was natural that the planters of the South 
should at least attempt the cultivation of cotton, 
as their soil and climate were adapted to its 
growth. However, the variety best suited to their 
fields had a staple which clung so tenaciously to the 
seed that it was practically impossible to separate 
it by hand on a commercialy profitable basis. 
Nevertheless, the colonists were encouraged to 
plant it, and nearly every settler in the Southern 
colonies had a small patch in his garden for home 
use. When cotton was picked in the fall, it was 
stored away and hand "ginned" during the winter, 
wnen labor was otherwise idle. 

But the demand for cotton grew, and finally the 
planters' problem of separating the lint from the 
seed was solved by Eli Whitney. He produced in 
1794 the first cotton gin, the principles of which 
are still used. Spikes (or saws) operating through 
slotted apertures pull the fibers from the seeds, 
and brushes remove the fibers from the spikes or 
saws. Holmes improved Whitney's gin by the in- 
vention of the well-known gin saws. In recent 
years a roller-type gin has been used to gin long- 
staple cotton grown in the irrigated Southwest. 

Whitney's gin revolutionized Southern farm- 
ing methods and resulted in establishing the one- 
crop plantation as the basis of Southern eco- 
nomics. New lands were sought for cotton raising. 
The Carolinas switched from rice to cotton ; .pio- 
neers in Tennessee began to plant cotton on their 
farms ; all the new states down the Mississippi 



River were settled by cotton planters. New Or- 
leans, Savannah, Charleston and Mobile grew 
rich in the service of the cotton planters. 

In a few decades the Southern states had firmly 
established themselves as the world's greatest cot- 
ton-producing area. Cotton raising spread west- 
ward to Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona, 
and California. Throughout much of this region, 
particularly in the deep South, development of 
other natural resources was secondary to the ef- 
fort to supply the world's mills with cotton. 

Cotton and its products find their way into al- 
most every industry known to mankind and are 
used in one form or another in practically every 
household. Thread spun from raw cotton has fur- 
nished three-quarters of the garmentry of man 
for generations. 

Importance Of Cotton 

Cotton is the most important cash crop in the 
United States. For many years cash income from 
cotton lint has been greater than the cash income 
from any other of our farm crops. Upon no other 
single agricultural commodity do so many Ameri- 
can citizens depend for a living. Corn, wheat and 
hay occupy a larger acreage, but corn and hay are 
feed crops consumed largely on the farms where 
produced, and wheat provides employment for 
fewer people. 

From 3,000 bales grown in 1790, the cotton 
production of the United States grew to the rec- 
ord crop of 18,250,000 running bales in 1937. ' 
Average yearly ginnings for the 34 years 1909- 
1942 were nearly 13,000,000 bales of lint and 
about 6,000,000 tons of cottonseed. During this 
time the land devoted to the growth of cotton in 
this country ranged from 27,000,000 to 47,000,- 
000 acres. The farm value of the cotton crop has 
been as high as two billion dollars in one year, 
1919. 

Approximately 13,500,000 people in the United 
States are directly dependent on the cotton crop 
for at least a substantial part of their livelihood. 
On 1,600,000 cotton farms of the South and the 
Southwest more than 10,000,000 persons, or 
2,500,000 families, are dependent on cotton for 



1 Cotton actually comprises two crops, fiber and seed. 
Wherever the word "cotton" appears in this report without 
specific qualification it refers to cotton fiber. 



1 Whenever a crop-year is referred to in this study, it 
means the twelve months beginning with August 1 of that 
vear. The crop-year 1937, for example, refers to the period 
from August 1, 1937, to July 31, 1938. See Glossary. 



the greater part of their income. Cotton textile 
manufacturing in all its branches provides the 
support of approximately 3,000,000 persons. In 
other work based upon cotton marketing and 
processing there are about 500,000, making a 
total of at least 13,500,000 persons directly de- 
pendent upon cotton for the necessities and com- 
forts of life. This is about 10 per cent of the popu- 
lation of the continental United States. 

Large as they are, these figures do not include 
the many owners of stocks and bonds of cotton 
mills and other companies whose business is based 
on cotton, nor bankers who finance the growing, 
handling, and manufacturing of cotton and the 
merchandising of cotton products. Nor do they in- 
clude the millions engaged in retail merchandising 
in establishments ranging from the crossroads 
trading center to the great city department store, 
each of which has a large variety of cotton prod- 
ucts on its shelves. 



Description of Cotton 

The cotton plant is of tropical origin and may 
vary from 2 to 6 feet in height, according to soil 
and climate. It bears cream-colored blossoms, 
from the base of which bolls or pods are de- 
veloped. In the interior of these the cotton seeds, 
enwrapped in the fiber, are produced. When ripe 
the bolls open, revealing the seed cotton in from 
two to five or six locks, which may easily be picked 
out. Under favorable conditions the plant con- 
tinues growing, bearing flowers and then bolls 
until killed by frost. The fields are usually picked 
two or three times, the last picking, or "scrap- 
ping", getting the "top crop" from the top of 
the plants. 

Cotton is planted in the late spring and early 
summer, and the bolls mature at successive in- 
tervals, as above described, from four to six 
months later. The crop-year extends from August 

TABLE I 



1 to the following July 31. The harvesting season 
begins in the Rio Grande Valley in Texas in July 
and progresses northward into the producing 
states until as late as November or December in 
some sections. 

Cotton as a rule is picked by hand. Some prog- 
ress has been made in the development of me- 
chanical cotton pickers and in Arizona, California, 
and New Mexico they have been used rather suc- 
cessfully. After being picked, the cotton is then 
transported in wagons or trucks to a gin on the 
farm or to a custom gin nearby. The ginning sep- 
arates the seed from the lint. The ratio is usually 
about one pound of lint to each two pounds of 
seed. 

Compression of Bales 

Cotton lint is baled at the gin in what is termed 
a flat or uncompressed bale or in what is termed 
a round bale. Unless it goes direct to a mill, the 
cotton later on is further compressed, as a rule. 
There are two types or degrees of further com- 
pression for American bales — so-called standard- 
density compression and high-density compres- 
sion. In general, bales are compressed to standard 
density for interior shipment and to high density 
for ocean shipment. Normally, nearly all cotton 
for export and a large part of that shipped to 
New England is compressed to high density for 
the sake of lower water transportation rates, 
which usually are based upon cubic displacement. 

The dimensions and weight of various types of 
bales are shown in Table I. 

From 1909 through 1942 round bales have never 
exceeded 5.6 per cent of the total, and in several 
years they were less than 1 per cent. In fact, since 
the 1932 season, which was the peak in this re- 
spect, the round bale has gradually declined until 
only 1/10 of 1 per cent was so baled during the 
1941 season. 



Description of American Cotton Bales 



Kind of Bale 
Flat, or gin (uncompressed) 
Standard density- 
High density 
Round bale 

Ginner's compress bale 

Source: U. S. Dept. of Agriculture, Miscellaneous Publication No. 310, "The Classification of Cotton," 
May 1938, Table 1, p. 5. 

3 



imensions (approxi- 


Weig 


ht (approxi- 






mate) 




mate) 


Ties 


per Bale 




Per Bale 


Per Cu. Ft. 


Usual 


Weight 


Inches 


Pounds 


Pounds 


Number 


Pounds 


54 x 27 x 45-48 


500 


12-15 


6 


9 


56 x 28 x 18-22 


500 


22-28 


8 


9 


59 x 24 x 19 


500 


28-40 


9 


9 


35 length, 22 


250 


33 








diameter 










52 x 25 x 20 


500 


25-35 


6 


9 



Most government and other published statistics 
on cotton are expressed in running bales (see 
Glossary) . Some cotton statistics, however, are ex- 
pressed in terms of bales equated to a gross weight 
of 500 pounds and net weight of 478 pounds. 
Whenever used herein, bales mean running bales, 
counting round bales as half bales, unless other- 
wise specified. 

Major Types of Cotton 

The length, character, and color of the cotton 
fiber vary according to the type and variety of the 
plant. Though there are hundreds of different va- 
rieties, four major types of cotton are produced 
commercially, as follows a : 

1. Sea-island cotton, native to tropical Amer- 
ica, has bolls usually of three locks with very 
long, silky fiber. "Fancy sea island", produced 
along the South Carolina coast and on off- 
shore islands, has a fiber 2 inches or more 
long, and is the most valuable of the world's 
cottons, surpassing all other types in length, 
strength, and fineness. The production of this 
cotton in the United States was ruined by 
boll-weevil infestation, so that at present it 
is a negligible factor in the world crop. 

2. Egyptian cotton also has a fine, silky, 
strong fiber, 1-3/16 to 1% inches in length. It 
is second in value only to the Sea-island. 
The great bulk of the crop is grown in Egypt, 
but some of this type is produced in the irri- 
gated valleys of Arizona. 

3-a. Upland long-staple cotton, grown chiefly 
in the United States, has bolls with four or 
five locks, with fibers from iy 8 to 1% inches 
long. For some uses it competes with Egyptian 
cotton. Most of the United States production 
of this type of cotton is in the Delta lands of 
Mississippi 2 , in the Pecos and Red River 
Valleys of Texas, and in Arkansas, California, 
Oklahoma, and South Carolina. 
3-b Upland short-staple cotton constitutes 
more than 90 per cent of the United States 
crop. Its fibers range in length from % to \y% 
inches. In the Cotton Belt hundreds of varie- 
ties are cultivated, differing in habit of 
growth, size of bolls, earliness of opening, and 
abundance, length, and uniformity of staple. 
4. Asiatic cotton is short, often only % to % 
or 1 inch, but is strong and rather rough. It 
is produced in India, China, Asia Minor, 



1 The Cotton Situation, Yearbook of The Department of 
Agriculture, 1921, pp. 327-330. 

2 Roughly, the area between the Yazoo and Mississippi 
rivers. The term refers to the Delta of the State of 
Mississippi and not the delta of the Mississippi River — see 
page 35. 



Persia, Indo-China, and Japan, but in sev- 
eral districts is giving way to the American 
upland type. Most of this type of cotton is 
applied to native or local uses. 
Of these four major types of cotton, three are 
grown in the United States, namely, Upland, 
American Egyptian, viz., Pima and SXP (Sakel- 
laridis crossed with Pima) ; and Sea-island. The 
Upland type, short and long staple, constitutes al- 
most all the cotton grown in this country. 

The American Egyptian cotton was first grown 
commercially in this country in 1918, when 36,000 
bales were produced. This was but 0.3 per cent of 
the total cotton crop. The production of this type 
of cotton has never exceeded 0.7 per cent of the 
total crop, and that amount was reached only in 
1920, when 93,000 bales were produced. It is grown 
in irrigated districts of Arizona, New Mexico, 
and Texas. 

Sea-island cotton was grown rather extensively 
at one time in the Southeastern coastal areas. It 
amounted to 1 per cent of the total cotton crop in 
1916, when 118,000 bales were produced. However, 
the boll weevil took such toll of this cotton that its 
production has almost vanished. During the last 
nineteen years the Sea-island cotton crop has 
amounted to less than 1/10 of 1 per cent of our an- 
nual cotton crop. 

World Cotton Production 

Production of United States and foreign cotton, 
by years, from 1909 to 1942, is shown in Table II. 
The United States for many years produced more 
than half of the world's commercial cotton, rang- 
ing up to 72 per cent in 1911. Except for our 1921 
crop, which was severely damaged by the boll 
weevil, we did not fall below 50 per cent of the 
total world's production until the 1933 season, 
when we produced but 49 per cent. Subsequent to 
that season the trend in the United States has been 
generally downward, with the exception of the 
record-breaking crop of 1937. Meanwhile, the 
trend in foreign and world production has been 
generally upward. 

Although American cotton no longer dominates 
the world's markets, we are still the leading cot- 
ton-producing country. The present war years ex- 
cepted, there is grown in this country each year 
nearly three times as much as in India, the country 
next in cotton production. Chart A affords a 



TABLE II 

World Cotton Production, United States and Foreign Bales, 478 Pounds Net 

(000 Omitted) 
United Total U. S. Percentage 

Year States Foreign World of Total 

1909 
1910 

1911 
1912 
1913 
1914 
1915 

1916 
1917 
1918 
1919 
1920 

1921 
1922 
1923 
1924 
1925 

1926 
1927 
1928 
1929 
1930 

1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 

1936 
1937 
1938 
1939 
1940 

1941 
1942(0 

(') Preliminary. 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Statistics, 1942, Table 137; 
Cotton Situation, January 1944, Page 8. 



10,005 


6,895 


16,900 


59 


11,609 


6,791 


18,400 


63 


15,694 


6,206 


21,900 


72 


13,703 


7,397 


21,100 


65 


14,153 


8,047 


22,200 


64 


16,112 


8,088 


24,200 


67 


11,172 


6,628 


17,800 


63 


11,448 


8,452 


19,900 


58 


11,284 


8,416 


19,700 


57 


12,018 


8,672 


20,690 


58 


11,411 


9,889 


21,300 


54 


13,429 


7,921 


21,350 


63 


7,945 


8,025 


15,970 


50 


9,755 


9,545 


19,300 


51 


10,140 


9,880 


20,020 


51 


13,630 


11,530 


25,160 


54 


16,105 


12,135 


28,240 


57 


17,978 


10,942 


28,920 


62 


12,956 


11,934 


24,890 


52 


14,477 


12,403 


26,880 


54 


14,825 


12,035 


26,860 


55 


13,932 


12,298 


26,230 


53 


17,097 


10,723 


27,820 


62 


13,003 


11,357 


24,360 


53 


13,047 


13 , 843 


26,890 


49 


9,636 


14,204 


23,840 


40 


10,638 


16,112 


26,750 


40 


12,399 


19,071 


31,470 


39 


18,946 


19,679 


38,625 


49 


11,943 


17,157 


29,100 


41 


11,817 


17,183 


29,000 


41 


12,566 


17,874 


30,440 


41 


10,744 


17,486 


28,230 


38 


12,817 


14,430 


27,250 


47 



graphic presentation of this and other comparisons 
of world cotton production. 

Cotton is grown in 60 or more countries. How- 
ever, only six are of great individual importance. 
These are the United States, India, China, Russia, 
Egypt, and Brazil. These countries averaged more 
than 90 per cent of the total world's cotton pro- 
duction for the 33 years 1909-41. Next in impor- 
tance are Peru, Mexico, Argentina, Uganda (Brit- 
ish Africa) , Anglo-Egyptian Sudan, Turkey, Bel- 
gian Congo, Chosen (Korea), and Iran. None of 
these ten has ever grown more than 1.5 per cent 
of the world's total cotton crop. Of the remaining 
forty-four countries, none has ever produced as 
much as 1.5 per cent of the world's total. In most 
instances the individual production has been much 
less than 1 per cent of the total. 

Egypt raises two distinct types of cotton. The 



more important is grown almost entirely in up- 
per Egypt 1 and has become known through- 
out the cotton trade as Uppers. Most of this cotton 
is ordinarily long staple, of lVs to 1-11/32 inches 
in length. The cotton grown in lower Egypt has 
for the most part been of longer staple (extra- 
long staple, 1% inches and longer) than that 
grown in upper Egypt. This variety is known 
as Sakellaridis. 

Egyptian Uppers is in many respects similar 
in quality to our domestic long-staple Upland, and 
the two are directly competitive for certain uses. 
Egyptian Sakellaridis is similar to American- 
Egyptian or Pima cotton and is generally con- 
sidered as directly competitive. 

American Upland-type cotton is the principal 
variety produced in Mexico, Uganda, Belgian 



1 See Glossary. 



Million Bales 



o 
o_ 

_i "S — 

2 - 

J M S 

I— T 

U E2 

m 

z 
o 

t— 
I- 

o 
o 






sa|pg uoi|||^ 



Congo, Argentina, Russia, Turkey, and Chosen 
(Korea) . In Brazil production of cotton is equally 
divided between American Upland variety and 
so-called "tree" cotton, probably derived from 
Peruvian "tree" cotton. In Anglo-Egyptian Sudan 
the cotton crop consists of both the American 
Upland and Egyptian Sakellaridis varieties. The 
principal type of cotton grown today in Peru 
is a native variety known as Tanguis, which 
doubtless is the result of crossing American Up- 



land with Egyptian Sakellaridis. China and India 
produce Asiatic-type cotton almost exclusively. 

Table III shows, by decades from 1910, the 
production of cotton in the principal producing 
countries of the world. 

Statistics on cotton grown in the countries 
shown below also are published. However, in no 
year from 1909 to 1937 has any of these countries 
produced as much as 30,000 bales. 



Algeria 




French Indo-China Japan 




Rumania 




Angola 




French Sudan 


Kenya 




Senegal 




Australia 




French Togo 


Malta 




Siam 




British West Indies 


Gold Coast 


Netherlands Indies 


Spain 




Cyprus 




Haiti 


New Hebrides 


Union of South Africa 


Dahomey 




Iraq 


Niger 


Territory 


Upper Volta (Fr. W. Africa) 


Ecuador 




Italian Somaliland Nyasaland 


Venezuela 


Eritrea 




Italy 


Puerto Rico 


Yugoslavia 


French Guinea 


Ivory Coast 


Rhodesia 












TABLE III 










Cotton Product! - 


on — World, and 


in Leading Countries (') 










Bales (000 Omitted) ( 2 ) 












1910 


1920 


1930 


1937 




World, Estimated 


18,400 


21,350 


26,230 


38,625 




United States 


11,609 


13.429 


13,932 


18,946 




India 




3,254 


3,013 


4,373 


4,867 




China 




( 3 ) 


2,406 


2,615 


3,600 




Russia 




592 


58 


1,587 


3.700 




Egypt 




1,555 


1,251 


1,715 


2,281 




Brazil 




357 


476 


483 


2,075 




Peru 




88 


177 


271 


376 




Mexico 




200 


( 3 ) 


178 


340 




Argentina 


2 


26 


139 


237 




Uganda 




17 


68 


158 


349 




Anglo-Egyptian Sudan 


18 


26 


106 


264 




Chosen (Korea) 


14 


101 


149 


214 




Iran 




( 3 ) 


5 


47 


271 




Turkey 




102" 


( 3 ) 


74 


299 




Belgian 


Congo 


( 3 ) 


3 


67 


175 




Bulgarte 


i 


1 


1 


4 


47 




Colombia 


n 


( 3 ) 


10 


27 




French Equatorial Africa 


o 


(*) 


6 


39 




Greece 




p) 


7 


17 


75 




Mozambique 


0) 


1 


10 


46 




Nigeria 




5 


26 


16 


27 




Paraguay 


( 3 ) 


1 


18 


42 


. 


Syria and Lebanon 


( 3 ) 


( 3 ) 


12 


26 




Tanganyika 


10 


2 


19 


51 



(») Those producing 30,000 or more bales in any year, 1930 to 1937. 

( 2 ) Of 478 pounds, net weight. 

( 3 ) Statistics not reported. 

( 4 ) Less than 100 bales. 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Statistics, 1939, Table 140, 
pages 106-7; World Cotton Situation, September 5, 1939. 

the various states having to do with cotton the 
relative volumes of, respectively, production, con- 
sumption, combined exports and coastwise ship- 
ments, and coastwise receipts. Imports are too 
small to be significant. 



Maps for American Cotton 

To facilitate understanding of the principal 
geographical facts in regard to American cotton, 
there are now introduced four outline maps, by 
states, marked A, B, C and D. These indicate for 






to 



>- 

CO 



<z 

Q.O 
O 

O 

on 

Q_ 



o 
o 










o 




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00,000 
50,000 
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1,500,00 
d Over 


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m ■*• - *• o o 


o o O o § § 

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N N ID N — — 










eg 

2 


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■ 

■ 


'& 




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■ 
■ 


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a 


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— 


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■ 




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— 




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3T 






■ 




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— 


■ 


'•'&% 


31 


:: + 


~ 


■ 


II 


H 



o 

CO 

o- 



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>- 

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cop 

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o 
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m 



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0,000 

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8 8 8 8 


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CM (N| — — 


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CO 



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o 
o 


















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+ 


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o 




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to 



11 



Chapter II 
Cotton Production In The United States 



Producing Area 

Cotton is produced, in sufficient quantities to 
be statistically recorded, in sixteen states, ex- 
tending from southeastern Virginia through 
North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Georgia, 
Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana, 
Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas, Arizona, 
and New Mexico to California. This is known as 
the Cotton Belt of the United States. It is a region 
of hot summers and mild winters. The average 
summer temperature of the Cotton Belt ranges 
from 77 degrees in the north to 85 degrees in the 
south. A frost-free growing season of at least 
180 days is usually necessary for the full growth 
and ripening of all the bolls. 



Cotton is also produced in small quantities in 
a few other states, but of insufficient amount to 
be recorded in crop statistics. The relative im- 
portance of the various states from the stand- 
point of production will be discussed later. 

Table IV shows the total Upland, American- 
Egyptian and Sea-Island produced in the United 
States, by years, from 1909 to 1942. Also shown 
is the total crop in physical bales, in equivalent 
500-pound bales and in running bales, counting 
round as half bales. 

Farms, Farmland and Cottonland 

Table V shows the number of farms and the 
farm population in the United States and in the 



TABLE IV 
Cotton Production in the United States 

Running Bales (Except as Indicated) 
(000 Omitted) 



Year 

1909 
1910 

1911 
1912 
1913 
1914 
1915 

1916 
1917 
1918 
1919 
1920 

1921 
1922 
1923 
1924 
1925 

1926 
1927 
1928 
1929 
1930 

1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 

1936 
1937 
1938 
1939 
1940 

1941 
1942 

(') Fewer than 500 bales. 

Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census, Cotton Production and Distribution, Bulletin 
180, Table 3, page 4. 

14 



Total Counting Total Equiva- 


Total 












Round as 


lent 500- 


Actual 




Upland 




American 


Sea- 


Half Bales 


Pound Bales 


Bales 


Square 


Round 


Egyptian 


Island 


10 


073 


10 


005 


10 


148 


9 


903 


151 




95 


11 


568 


11 


609 


11 


625 


11 


422 


113 




90 


15 


553 


15 


693 


15 


604 


15 


383 


102 




119 


13 


489 


13 


703 


13 


529 


13 


374 


82 




74 


13 


983 


14 


156 


14 


033 


13 


855 


100 




78 


15 


906 


16 


135 


15 


935 


15 


795 


58 




82 


11 


068 


11 


192 


11 


124 


10 


920 


112 




92 


11 


364 


11 


450 


11 


460 


11 


150 


192 




118 


11 


248 


11 


302 


11 


343 


11 


061 


189 




93 


11 


906 


12 


041 


11 


984 


11 


741 


154 


36 


52 


11 


326 


11 


421 


11 


383 


11 


221 


114 


40 


7 


13 


271 


13 


440 


13 


374 


13 


073 


207 


93 


2 


7 


,978 


7 


957 


8 


040 


7 


875 


124 


37 


3 


9 


,729 


9 


,762 


9 


,815 


9 


,605 


172 


33 


5 


10 


,171 


10 


140 


10 


292 


10 


026 


242 


22 


1 


13 


,639 


13 


628 


13 


797 


13 


,478 


314 


4 


(') 


16 


,123 


16 


,104 


16 


298 


15 


,927 


351 


20 


0) 


17 


755 


17 


977 


18 


087 


17 


407 


664 


16 


(') 


12 


783 


12 


956 


13 


058 


12 


484 


550 


24 


( l ) 


14 


297 


14,478 


14 


634 


13 


931 


675 


28 


( l ) 


14 


548 


14 


825 


14 


834 


14 


233 


572 


29 


0) 


13 


756 


13 


932 


14 


018 


13 


470 


524 


23 


( l ) 


16 


629 


17 


096 


16 


940 


16,304 


621 


14 


(') 


12 


710 


13 


002 


13 


072 


12 


338 


726 


8 


( l ) 


12 


664 


13 


047 


12 


968 


12 


351 


607 


10 


( l ) 


9 


472 


9 


637 


9 


571 


9 


359 


197 


14 


(') 


10 


420 


10 


638 


10 


567 


10 


255 


294 


18 


0) 


12 


141 


12 


399 


12 


283 


11 


982 


282 


18 


1 


18 


252 


18 


945 


18 


415 


18 


074 


327 


11 


4 


11 


623 


11 


944 


11 


702 


11 


519 


158 


21 


4 


11 


481 


11 


816 


11 


569 


11 


365 


175 


27 


2 


12 


298 


12 


565 


12 


300 


12 


259 


3 


32 


5 


10 


495 


10 


742 


10 


495 


10 


433 


1 


58 


3 


12 


438 


12 


820 


12 


438 


12 


363 




74 


1 



TABLE V 
Number of Farms and Farm Population, United States and Cotton States 

(000 Omitted) 

Number of Farms Farm Population 

1930 1940 1930 1940 



United States 

All Cotton States 

Per cent Cotton States are of U. S. 

Alabama 

Florida 

Georgia 

Louisiana 

Mississippi 

North Carolina 

South Carolina 

Tennessee 

Virginia 

TOTAL SOUTH 

Per cent Total South is of U. S. 

Per cent South is of Cotton States 

Arkansas 
Missouri 
Oklahoma 
Texas 

TOTAL SOUTHWEST 

Per cent Total Southwest is of U. S. 

Per cent Southwest is of Cotton States 

Arizona 
California 
New Mexico 

TOTAL FAR WEST 

Per cent Total Far West is of U. S. 

Per cent Far West is of Cotton States 



6,289 


6,097 


30,445 


30,475 


3,279 


3,046 


16,403 


16,363 


52 


50 


54 


i 


257 


232 


1,340 


1,344 


59 


62 


279 


308 


256 


216 


• 1,419 


1,370 


161 


150 


831 


857 


313 


291 


1,363 


1,406 


280 


278 


1,600 


1,654 


158 


138 


916 


916 


246 


248 


1,215 


1,276 


171 


175 


951 


926 


1,901 


1,790 


9,914 


10,057 


30 


29 


33 


33 


58 


59 


60 


6 


242 


217 


1,119 


1,114 


256 


256 


1,115 


1,127 


204 


180 


1,024 


935 


495 


418 


2,352 


2,166 


1,197 


1,071 


5,610 


5,341 


19 


18 


18 


18 


37 


35 


34 


t 


14 


18 


99 


115 


136 


133 


621 


671 


31 


34 


159 


179 


181 


185 


879 


965 


3 


3 


3 


3 



54 



61 



33 



Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census, "Agriculture Summary, 16th Census," 1940. 



Cotton States in 1930 and in 1940. Between 1930 
and 1940 the number of farms in the Cotton States 
declined by 233,000, contrasted with an increase 
of 41,000 in the rest of the United States. The 
farm population decreased by 40,000 in the Cotton 
States, but the rest of the United States had an 
increase of 70,000. These changes are not large 
percentagewise, but the less favorable showing of 
the Cotton States is noteworthy, especially as in 
1940 there were in the Cotton States 50 per cent of 
all the farms and 54 per cent of the entire farm 
population of the United States. Price conditions 
for cotton as outlined on pages 18 and 19 may have 
a bearing upon these decreases in the Cotton 
States. 

Cotton Farms 

Table VI shows the numbers of all farms and of 
cotton farms in the United States and in the Cot- 
ton States in 1930 and 1940. 

In some of the Cotton States practically all farms 
are cotton farms. For instance, in Mississippi 89 



per cent, in Alabama 87 per cent, in South Carolina 
81 per cent, in Georgia 77 per cent, in Louisiana 
76 per cent, in Arkansas 70 per cent, and in Texas 
65 percent of all farms were cotton farms in 1940. 
In the cotton producing states in the South, ex- 
cluding Virginia and Florida, cotton farms on the 
average were 67 per cent of all farms. In the three 
larger Southwestern cotton-growing states of Ar- 
kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas 63 per cent of the 
farms were cotton farms in 1940. 

Of the 3,046,000 farms in the Cotton Belt in 
1940, cotton farms totaled 1,588,000, or 52 per cent. 
This is a marked reduction under 1930, when 61 
per cent of all farms were cotton farms. Similar 
large reductions took place in each of the several 
Cotton States, except in Mississippi, South Caro- 
lina, Missouri, and California. The two latter states 
had small increases. The decline was 10 percentage 
points for the Southern group as a whole and 12 
percentage points for the Southwestern group. 
There were especially heavy decreases in the per- 
centage ratio of cotton farms to all farms in North 



15 









TABLE 


VI 














All Farms and Cotton Farms, United States and Cotton States 
















(000 Omitted) 
























Cotton Farms 








Number of All Farms 


Number of Cotton Farms 


Per cent of All Farms 








1930 


1940 


1930 


1940 


1930 




1940 




United States 


6,289 


6,097 


1,987 


1,590 


32 




26 




Cotton States 


3.279 


3,046 


1,984 


1,588 


61 




52 




Alabama 




257 


232 


232 


201 


90 




87 




Florida 




59 


62 


12 


9 


20 




14 




Georgia 




256 


216 


207 


167 


81 




77 




Louisiana 




161 


150 


129 


114 


80 




76 




Mississipp 


i 


313 


291 


282 


260 


90 




89 




North Carolina 


280 


278 


152 


103 


54 




37 




South Carolina 


158 


138 


131 


112 


83 




81 




Tennessee 




246 


248 


88 


77 


36 




31 




Virginia 




171 


175 


14 


7 


8 
61 




4 
51 




Total 


1,901 


1,790 


1,247 


1,050 


Arkansas 




242 


217 


192 


151 


79 




70 




Missouri 




256 


256 


16 


17 


6 




7 




Oklahoma 




204 


180 


123 


87 


61 




48 




Texas 




495 


418 


395 


273 


80 
61 




65 
49 




Total 


1,197 


1,071 


726 


528 


Arizona 




14 


18 


3 


2 


24 




11 




California 




136 


133 


4 


5 


3 




4 




New Mexi 


CO 


31 


34 


4 


3 


12 
6 




8 
6 




Total 


181 


185 


11 


10 


Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census. "Agriculture Summary, 16th Census," 
1940. 




Carolina, Oklahoma and Texas. 


In 1940 a little 


Federal and 


state governments 


and 


the cotton 




more than half the farms in the Cotton States as 


farmers to reduce cotton 


acreage 


and by the con- 




a whole were cotton farms, while 


in the Southwest- 


solidation of small farms into larger farms. 




ern group of states cotton farms 


were slightly less 














than half. Probably some of the reduction 


in cot- 




Size of 


Farms 








ton farms is accounted for by co-operation 


of the 


Table VII i 


shows the average 


size 


of farms in 










TABLE VII 














Average Size of AH Farms, and Ratio of Cotton Farms to All Farms, 














United States and Cotton States 


















Average Size of Farms 




Cotton Farms 












Acres 


Acres 


Per cent of all Farms 










1930 


1940 




1940 










United States 




157 


174 




26 










Alabama 




68 


83 




87 










Florida 




85 


134 




14 










Georgia 




86 


110 




77 








• 


Louisiana 




58 


67 




76 










Mississippi 




55 


66 




89 










North Carolina 




65 


68 




37 










South Carolina 




66 


82 




81 










Tennessee 




73 


75 




31 










Virginia 




98 


94 




4 










Arkansas 




66 


83 




70 










Missouri 




132 


136 




7 










Oklahoma 




166 


194 




48 










Texas 




252 


329 




65 










Arizona 




743 


1,389 




11 










California 




224 


230 




4 










New Mexico 




982 


1,139 




8 










Source: U. S. 


Department 


of Agriculture, Bureau of Agricultural Economics, 










"Tabulations from 


U. S. Census 


regarding the Land and the 


People on the Land," 










October, 1941. 




16 















1930 and 1940. For convenient reference the per- 
centages of cotton farms to all farms in 1940 are 
repeated therein from Table VI. While the total 
number of farms was reduced some 200,000 be- 
tween 1930 and 1940, the average size of farms 
increased from 157 to 170 acres per farm in the 
United States. 

Cotton farms in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, 
Mississippi, South Carolina, Arkansas, and Texas 
averaged 78 per cent of all farms in 1940. The 
average size of farms in each of the seven states 
named (and in all other cotton states except Vir- 
ginia) increased in 1940 over 1930. It follows that 
cotton farms also increased in size, since such a 
large percentage of the farms in those states were 
cotton farms. 



Cropland and Cotton Acreage Harvested 

Of the land in farms, that which is of particular 
interest for this study is the "cropland" and "cot- 
ton acreage." These statistics are shown in 
Table VIII. 

Between 1930 and 1940 cropland harvested de- 
creased 11 per cent in the United States and 12 
per cent in the Southwest, at the same time in- 
creasing 3 per cent in the South and 1 per cent in 
the Far West. It decreased 1 per cent in the com- 
bined South and Southwest areas against 5 per 
cent in the Cotton States as a whole. Cotton acre- 
age, on the other hand, showed heavy reductions 
in practically all states during this same period. 
In all Cotton States it was reduced 47 per cent, in 
the South 46 per cent, in the Southwest 49 per 



TABLE VIII 

Cropland and Cotton Acreage Harvested, United States and Cotton States 

(000 Omitted) 



United States 
Cotton States 

Alabama 

Florida 

Georgia 

Louisiana 

Mississippi 

North Carolina 

South Carolina 

Tennessee 

Virginia 

TOTAL SOUTH 

Per cent Total South is of U. S. 

Per cent Total South is of C. S. 

Arkansas 
Missouri 
Oklahoma 
Texas 

TOTAL SOUTHWEST 

Per cent Total Southwest is of U. S. 

Per cent Total Southwest is of C. S. 

TOTAL SOUTH AND SOUTHWEST 
(Minus Florida, Virginia and Missouri) 
Per cent of United States 
Per cent of Cotton States 

Arizona 
California 
New Mexico 

TOTAL FAR WEST 

Per cent Total Far West is of U. S. 

Per cent Total Far West is of C. S. 

Sources: U. S. Dept. of Commerce, Bureau of Census, 16th Census of the United States, 1940; Cotton Production and Distri- 
bution Bulletins. 















1940 




1930 






1940 




- Per cent of 1930 


Cropland 


Cotton 


Per cent 


Cropland 


Cotton 


Per cent 


Cropland 


Cotton 


359,242 


45,091 


13 


321,242 


23,861 


7 


89 


53 


122,065 


45,072 


37 


115,500 


23,839 


21 


95 


53 


7,114 


3,770 


53 


7,112 


1,961 


28 


100 


52 


1,454 


120 


8 


1,680 


65 


5 


116 


54 


8,337 


3,863 


46 


8,803 


1,935 


22 


106 


50 


4,068 


2,110 


52 


4,052 


1,130 


28 


100 


54 


6,597 


4,243 


64 


6,953 


2,500 


36 


105 


59 


5,810 


1,643 


28 


6,125 


829 


14 


105 


50 


4,137 


2,173 


53 


4,322 


1,234 


29 


104 


57 


6,106 


1,225 


20 


6,159 


715 


12 


101 


58 


3,975 


89 


2 
40 


3,840 


32 


1 
21 


97 
103 


36 


47,598 


19,236 


49,046 


10,401 


54 


13 


43 




15 


43 








39 


43 




42 


43 








6,582 


3,908 


59 


6,610 


2,061 


31 


100 


53r 


13,176 


369 


3 


12,400 


408 


3 


94 


111 


15,553 


3,997 


26 


12,766 


1,822 


14 


82 


4ft 


30,634 


16,950 


55 

38 


26,044 


8,472 


33 

22 


85 
88 


50 


65,945 


25,224 


57,820 


12,763 


51 


18 


56 




18 


54 








54 


56 




50 


54 




•• 




94,938 


43,882 


46 


88,946 


22,659 


25 


94 


52 


26 


97 




28 


95 








78 


97 




77 


95 








478 


215 


45 


526 


220 


42 


110 


102 


6,550 


270 


5 


6,535 


348 


5 


100 


129 


1,494 


127 


9 

7 


1,573 


107 


7 
8 


105 
101 


84 


8,522 


612 


8,634 


675 


110 


2 


1 




3 


3 




. , 




7 


1 




7 


3 









17 



cent, and in the combined South and Southwest 
48 per cent. 

Putting the situation another way, in the South- 
ern and Southwestern states, comprising by far 
the greatest part of the Cotton Belt, the percent- 
age of cotton land to cropland fell from 46 per 
cent in 1930 to 25 per cent in 1940. The 1940 
percentage is barely more than half the 1930 per- 
centage. This drop of about one-half in the per- 
centage relationship prevails generally throughout 
the Cotton States, the principal exceptions being 
the Far Western states and Missouri. It is mani- 
fest that more and more cropland is being with- 
drawn from cotton cultivation. 

Cotton acreage in the United States has been 
controlled by one means or another since the be- 
ginning of the 1933 season. Reductions were mo- 
tivated principally by an over-supply of cotton in 
the world markets. This in turn was due to in- 
creased production in foreign countries, as well as 
to record crops in this country, during the 10 
years beginning with 1924. While the trend in 
wdrld cotton consumption was upward, it did not 
nearly equal the upward trend in cotton produc- 
tion. This caused increasingly large carry-overs, 
with the effect of dropping the price of cotton to 
its lowest level since the turn of the century. 



Leading cotton growers agreed with the Federal 
Government in 1933 that the best way to meet this 
situation would be to curtail acreage. Since the 
1933 season cotton acreage in the United States 
has been drastically reduced : first, by mutual 
agreement, second, by the Bankhead 1 Cotton Act, 
1934, and, third, by state-controlled regulation 
administered by the Federal Government, the last 
being currently in effect. 

Even though total cotton acreage has been re- 
duced about 50 per cent since 1930, cotton in 1940 
still constituted 25 per cent of all cropland har- 
vested in the ten principal cotton producing 
states in the South and Southwest and 42 per cent 
in Arizona. 

Farm Operators 

In 1940, of the 6,097,000 farms in the United 
States, 5,378,000, or 88 per cent, were operated by 
white operators, while 719,000, or 12 per cent, 
were operated by non-white operators. The per- 
centage of white operators is not so large in most 
of the Cotton States as it is in the United States 
as a whole, as will be seen from Table IX. 

Acreage 

Cotton acreage, yield per acre and production 
in the United States for the years 1909-44 are 



TABLE IX 

Number and Color of Farm Operators, United States and Cotton States, 1940 

(000 Omitted) 









Per cent White 




White 


Non-White 


of Total 


United States 


5,378 


719 


88 


Cotton States 


2,350 


696 


78 


Alabama 


159 


73 


68 


Florida 


52 


10 


84 


Georgia 


157 


59 


73 


Louisiana 


90 


60 


60 


Mississippi 


131 


160 


45 


North Carolina 


218 


60 


78 


South Carolina 


76 


62 


55 


Tennessee 


220 


28 


89 


Virginia 


140 


35 


80 


Arkansas 


160 


57 


74 


Missouri 


252 


4 


99 


Oklahoma 


166 


14 


92 


Texas 


365 


53 


87 


Arizona 


10 


8 


55 


California 


126 


7 


95 


New Mexico 


28 


6 


84 



Sources: U. S. Dept. of Agriculture, Bureau of Agricultural Economics, "Tabula- 
tions from U. S. Census Regarding The Land and The People on The Land," 2nd Edition, 
October, 1941; U. S. Dept. of Commerce, Bureau of Census, 16th Census of the United 
States, 1940, Agriculture. 



For summary of this act, see Appendix, page 95 



18 



shown in Table X. Acreage steadily increased 
from 1909, reaching its peak during the 1926 sea- 
son, when 47,087,000 acres were harvested. This 
represented an increase of 52 per cent over 1909, 
or approximately 17,000,000 more acres. It like- 
wise resulted in the largest production of cotton 
for any season up to that time, 17,755,000 bales 
being produced. 

After the peak season of 1926, the acreage con- 
tinued to exceed 40,000,000 acres annually through 
the 1931 season. The harvesting of such a huge 
acreage of cotton without a corresponding in- 
crease in consumption caused the average price 
of cotton to the farmer for 1931 to drop to 5.6 
cents a pound, the lowest level in modern history. 
Production amounted in 1931 to 16,630,000 bales. 



Thereafter the Agricultural Adjustment Ad- 
ministration 1 took steps to reduce cotton acre- 
age, to bring the supply nearer to normal, and 
thus to increase the price. 

Further curtailment of cotton acreage occurred 
with the enactment on March 21, 1934, of the 
Bankhead Act. This act provided that 10,000,000 
bales could be ginned free of penalty in the 1934 
crop year. Cotton with staple length of IV2 inches 
and longer was exempted. Other cotton in excess 
of 10,000,000 bales was subject to a tax of 50 per 
cent of the average central market price of %-inch 
Middling spot cotton. In any case, the tax was to 
be not less than 5 cents per pound. 



1 For summary of the Agricultural Adjustment Act, see 
Appendix, page 94 



TABLE X 








Acreage Harvested, Yield Per Acre, 


and Production — 


United States 






Acreage Harvested 


Yield Per Acre 


Production 500-lb. Bales 


Year 


(000 Omitted) 


(Pounds) 


(000 Omitted) 


1909 


30, 


938 


154 


10, 


005 


1910 


32, 


403 


171 


11, 


609 


1911 


36 


045 


208 


15, 


693 


1912 


34,283 


191 


13, 


703 


1913 


37, 


089 


182 


14, 


156 


1914 


36, 


832 


209 


16, 


135 


1915 


31 


412 


170 


11 


192 


1916 


34,985 


157 


11, 


450 


1917 


33, 


841 


160 


11, 


302 


1918 


36, 


008 


160 


12, 


041 


1919 


33, 


566 


162 


11 


421 


1920 


35 


878 


178 


13 


440 


1921 


30 


509 


125 


7,957 


1922 


33 


036 


141 


9 


762 


1923 


37 


123 


131 


10 


140 


1924 


41 


360 


157 


13 


628 


1925 


46 


053 


167 


16 


104 


1926 


47 


,087 


183 


17 


,977 


1927 


40 


138 


155 


12 


,956 


1928 


45,341 


153 


14 


,478 


1929 


45,793 


155 


14 


825 


1930 


45 


,091 


148 


13 


,932 


1931 


40 


,693 


201 


17 


,096 


1932 


35 


,939 


173 


13 


,002 


1933 


29 


,978 


209 


13 


,047 


1934 


26 


,987 


171 


9 


,637 


1935 


27 


,335 


186 


10 


,638 


1936 


30 


028 


198 


12 


,399 


1937 


33 


623 


270 


18 


,945 


1938 


24 


248 


236 


11 


,944 


1939 


23 


805 


238 


11 


,816 


1940 


23 


,861 


253 


12 


,565 


1941 


22 


238 


232 


10 


,742 


1942 


22 


,602 


273 


12 


,824 


1943 


21 


,652 


254 


11 


,427 


1944(») 


20 


,164 


273 


11 


,483 



0) September 8, 1944, forecast by U. S. Department of Agriculture. 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Statistics and Yearbook of 
Agriculture. 

19 



While acreage reduction was attained, produc- 
tion was not reduced so much as intended. In re- 
ducing acreage farmers ceased to use their poorer 
land and concentrated their work and fertilizer 
on the better land, which caused the average yield 
per acre to increase materially. The all-time rec- 
ord crop was grown in 1937, with a production 
of 18,252>000 bales. This -was 89 per cent greater 
production than in 1909, grown on but 9 per cent 
greater acreage. A yield of 270 pounds per acre 
was attained, an all-time high up to then, and 175 
per cent of the 1909 yield per acre. Illustrating 
further the use of better and more fertile land 
for cotton since the passage of the Bankhead Act, 
the 1926 and 1937 crop yields are compared as 
follows : 



Year 

1937 
1926 



Acreage 
Harvested 

33,623,000 
47,087,000 



Yield Per Acre 
(Pounds) 

270 
183 



Ginnings 

(Bales) 

18,252,000 
17,755,000 



Sources: U. S. Department of Agriculture, 1928 Year Book: 
Agricultural Statistics, 1942, Table 136; U. S. Department of 
Commerce, Bureau of Census, Cotton Production and Distribu- 
tion, Bulletin 180, Table 3. 

Table XI shows acreage harvested, yield per 

acre and production of American Upland cotton 

in the United States, in 1910, 1920, 1930 and 1940. 

Acreage was reduced by more than 8,000,000 



acres, or 26 per cent, from 1910 to 1940. During 
the same period reductions were made of 60 per 
cent in Georgia, 51 per cent in South Carolina, 
45 per cent in Alabama, and 25 per cent in Missis- 
sippi. The reduction amounted to 16 per cent in 
Texas, with small reductions in Tennessee and 
Arkansas and increased acreage in Louisiana, Mis- 
souri and California. 

Yield Per Acre 

Average yields per acre for the United States 
as a whole began declining after 1914, reaching a 
minimum of 125 pounds in 1921. Between 1921 
and 1933 the yield approximated prewar levels 
only in 1926 and 1931. Subsequent to 1932, when 
acreage was reduced, average yields per acre have 
shown a very definite upward trend and attained 
an all-time high of 273 pounds in 1942. 

Yield fluctuates somewhat from year to year 
due to drought, floods, and insect infestation. The 
principal reason, however, for the marked in- 
crease during the past seven years is that farmers 
have used their better land for cotton and put the 
inferior land into other crops. Also, with a smaller 
cotton acreage, they have devoted more attention 



United States 

Alabama 

Florida 

Georgia 

Louisiana 

Mississippi 

North Carolina 

South Carolina 

Tennessee 

Virginia 

Arkansas 
Missouri 
Oklahoma 
Texas 

Arizona 
California 
New Mexico 

All Other States 



TABLE XI 

American Upland Cotton Acreage Harvested, Yield Per Acre and Production 1 

1910 

Produc- 
Acreage Yield tion 

32,403 171 11,609 



—1920 

Produc- 
Acreage Yield tion 

35,878 178 13,440 



1930 

Produc- 
Acreage Yield tion 

45,091 148 13,932 



3,560 

257 

4,873 

975 

3,317 

1,478 

2,534 

765 

33 



160 
110 
173 
120 
182 
227 
216 
207 
212 



2,238 175 

100 285 

2,204 200 

10,060 145 



9 335 



12 



1,194 

59 

1,767 

246 

1,263 

706 

1,164 

332 

15 

821 

60 

923 

3,049 



10 



2,858 

100 

4,900 

1,470 

2,950 

1,587 

2,964 

840 

42 



111 

86 

138 

126 

145 
275 
260 
185 
230 



2,980 195 

136 275 

2,749 230 

11,898 174 

230 224 

150 266 



24 



663 

18 

1,415 

388 

895 

925 

1,623 

325 

21 

1,214 

79 

1,336 

4,345 

103 

75 



3,770 
120 
3,863 
2,110 
4,243 
1,643 
2,173 
1,225 
89 



187 
200 
197 
162 
165 
225 
220 
147 
225 



3,908 107 

369 195 

3,997 102 

16,950 114 



1,473 

50 

1,593 

715 

1,464 

775 

1,001 

377 

42 

874 

151 

854 

4,038 



215 346 155 

270 468 264 

127 375 99 

19 7 



1940 

Produc- 
Acreage Yield tion 

23,861 253 12,566 



1,961 

65 

1,935 

1,130 

2,500 

829 

1,234 

715 

32 



190 
154 
250 
194 
240 
427 
375 
340 
370 



2,061 349 

408 454 

1,822 211 

8,472 184 



22 392 



779 

21 

1,010 

456 

1,250 

739 

966 

509 

25 

1,501 
388 
802 

3,234 



220 424 195 
348 749 545 
107 576 128 



18 



'Acreage harvested, 000 omitted. 

Yield per acre, in pounds. 

Production: Bales of 500 pounds gross weight, 000 omitted. 

Sources: U. S. Department of Agriculture, Yearbooks 1916-24-28-32-33-34-35, Agricultural Statistics 1936-42, "Cotton 
Acreage, Yield and Production, 1866 to 1938"; U. S. Dept. of Commerce, Cotton Production and Distribution, Bulletins 107, 114. 

20 



to cultivation and insect control and have used 
more commercial fertilizer per acre. 

Yield per acre varies sharply from state to 
state. Table XII shows the average yield per 
acre of cotton in the United States and Cotton 
States, by decades since 1910. 

The average yield per acre is much greater in 
California than in any other state. California has 
more than doubled its average yield since 1910. 
The explanation of this tremendous increase is 
illuminating. 

Prior to 1925 many varieties of cotton were 
grown in California. After much experimenting 
with various varieties, a type was developed that 
gave promise of higher yields per acre. This was 
called Acala. 

A state law enacted in 1925 provided that only 
one variety of cotton (Acala) might be grown in 
certain prescribed and denned districts. Under 



Contrasted with the average 1940 yield per acre 
of 749 pounds in California are yields of 375 
pounds in South Carolina, 240 pounds in Missis- 
sippi, 194 pounds in Louisiana, 190 pounds in 
Alabama, and 184 pounds in Texas. 

While one-variety production of cotton is prac- 
ticed in other states to some extent, there is no 
similar law restricting cotton production to one 
specified type. Whether results similar to those 
in California could be obtained with Acala or with 
some other variety in other cotton-growing states 
is a question which would appear to be worth in- 
vestigation by interested railroads. 

Chart B presents graphically the yield per acre 
and total production, by years, from 1909 to 1942. 
On the whole, the trend in production correlates 
rather closely with the trend in yield per acre. 







TABLE XII 










Cotton Yield Per Acre 


in Pounds 
















1940 Per cent 




1910 


1920 


1930 


1940 


of 1910 


United States 


171 


178 


148 


253 


148 


Alabama 


160 


111 


187 


190 


119 


Florida 


110 


86 


200 


154 


140 


Georgia 


173 


138 


197 


250 


145 


Louisiana 


120 


126 


162 


194 


162 


Mississippi 


182 


145 


165 


240 


132 


North Carolina 


227 


275 


225 


427 


188 


South Carolina 


216 


260 


220 


375 


174 


Tennessee 


207 


185 


147 


340 


164 


Virginia 


212 


230 


225 


370 


175 


Arkansas 


175 


195 


107 


349 


199 


Missouri 


285 


275 


195 


454 


159 


Oklahoma 


200 


230 


102 


211 


106 


Texas 


145 


174 


114 


184 


127 


Arizona 




224 


346 


424 




California 


335 


266 


468 


749 


224 


New Mexico 






375 


576 





Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Statistics 1942, Table 139. 



the protection afforded by this law and by plant- 
quarantine regulations, the San Joaquin Valley 
has become one of the largest one-variety cotton- 
producing areas in the United States. The United 
States Department of Agriculture, the California 
Planting Cottonseed Distributors, and the com- 
mercial cotton companies jointly have promoted 
and facilitated the use of seed of this variety. The 
supply of parent Acala seed is increased each year, 
and is distributed under direct supervision of the 
California Planting Cottonseed Distributors. 



Reduction from Full Yield Per Acre 

The American cotton crop suffers from floods 
droughts, and insects rather severely. The total 
reduction from full yield x per acre from all causes 
averaged 37 per cent of the entire crop for the 
34 years 1909-42. The largest reduction, 53 per 
cent, was in 1921, when the boll weevil did more 
damage to the cotton crop than in any single year 
before or since, accounting for more than 31 per 



1 Estimated maximum possible yield. 



21 



Million Bales 

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Chart B 

COTTON: YIELD PER ACRE AND PRODUCTION IN THE UNITED STATES 

1909- 1942 










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1942 
1941 
1940 
1939 
1938 
1937 
1936 
1935 
1934 
1933 
1932 
1931 
1930 
1929 
1928 
1927 
1926 
1925 
1924 
1923 
1922 
1921 
1920 
1919 
1918 
1917 
1916 
1915 
1914 
1913 
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1910 
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22 



cent of the diminution. Droughts at various times 
have caused material decreases from the full yield, 
as in 1929 and 1930, when the yield was reduced 
44 per cent and 47 per cent, respectively. Floods, 
severe storms and wet weather have resulted in 
substantial decreases from full yield from time to 
time; in 1927 and 1928 reductions of 39 per cent 
and 36 per cent, respectively, were caused by floods 
in the Mississippi River and storms along the 
South Atlantic Coast. 

While droughts, floods, rainy seasons, and in- 
sects bring about reduction from full yield, good 
weather sometimes offsets these elements. The 
reduction has 'been relatively small in the seasons 
of 1931, 1937, and 1942 as a result of good weather 
conditions, the damage from all causes amounting 
to but 28 per cent, 23 per cent, and 22 per cent, 
respectively. 

During the 34-year period 1909-42, reduction 
from boll weevil damage in the 13 principal cot- 
ton growing states averaged 11 per cent. 

Commercial Fertilizer Used on Cotton 

The total tonnage of commercial fertilizer used 
on cotton in recent years has been less than for- 
merly. Table XIII shows the total tonnage used 
on cotton and pounds applied per acre, by years, 
from 1922 to 1944. 

The average tonnage used in the 5-year period 
1922-26 was 1,800,000 net tons, compared with 
1,490,000 net tons in the period 1938-42. Although 
the total tonnage of fertilizer applied has been less, 
the amount applied per acre has been on the in- 
crease. The average amount applied per acre for 
the 5-year period 1922-26 was 263 pounds, whereas 
for the 5-year period 1938-42 it was 283 pounds. 
The decrease in total tonnage used along with an 
increase per acre is accounted for by the average 
reduction of 17,480,000 acres harvested in 1938-42 
under 1922-26. 

During the 23-year period 1922-44 the smallest 
amount of fertilizer used per acre was in 1932, 
when 206 pounds were applied. The greatest 
amount used was in 1944, when 328 pounds were 
applied. 

Use of commercial fertilizer per acre on cotton 
varies extensively among the states. In 1940 
Oklahoma and Texas applied but 140 and 170 
pounds, respectively, whereas North Carolina and 



South Carolina applied 420 and 405 pounds, re- 
spectively. The average amount applied for the 
United States as a whole was 277 pounds. 

TABLE XIII 

Total Amount of Commercial Fertilizer Used and Amount 

Applied Per Acre 

When Used on Cotton — United States 





r ei Liiiz.fi 

Net Tons 


Pounds Per 


Year 


(000 Omitted) 


Acre 


1922 


1,195 


250 


1923 


1,606 


258 


1924 


1,900 


268 


1925 


2,124 


270 


1926 


2,161 


269 


1927 


1,693 


262 


1928 


2,159 


266 


1929 


2,231 


265 


1930 


2,201 


259 


1931 


1,355 


230 


1932 


865 


206 


1933 


1,207 


240 


1934 


997 


245 


1935 


1,151 


259 


1936 


1,317 


261 


1937 


1.754 


280 


1938 


1,462 


282 


1939 


1,475 


280 


1940 


1,521 


277 


1941 


1.528 


285 


1942 


1,461 


293 


1943 


1,574 


313 


1944 


1,547 


328 



Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Commercial 
Fertilizer Used on Cotton, Crop Years 1922-39," August 1940; 
Cotton Production, August 1, 1941, August 9, 1943, August 8, 
1944; Consolidated Cotton Report. 

Production 

Cotton acreage harvested and cotton production 
in the United States, by years, from 1909 to 1942, 
are graphically shown on Chart C. The chart 
shows wide fluctuations from year to year in both 
acreage and production. It also shows a fairly reg- 
ular 5-year or 6-year interval between the peaks of 
successive upswings in production. The cause of 
this showing would appear to be worth further ex- 
ploration. 

Cotton production has exceeded 10,000,000 bales 
annually since 1909, with the exception of 1921 and 
1922, when it was reduced by the boll weevil, and 
in 1934, when acreage was sharply reduced (see 
Table IV, p. 14). 

During the 5-year period 1909-13 domestic pro- 
duction averaged 12,933,000 bales. In 1914 pro- 
duction reached a record of 15,900,000 bales. From 
1915 to 1923 reduced acreages and low yields re- 
sulted in an average annual production of less than 
11,000,000 bales. The lowest production since the 



23 



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Chart C 

COTTON: ACREAGE HARVESTED AND 
PRODUCTION IN THE UNITED STATES 


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1942 

1941 

1940 

1939 

1938 

1937 

1936 

1935 

1934 

1933 

1932 

1931 

1930 

1929 

1928 

1927 

1926 

1925 

1924 

1923 

1922 

1921 

1920 

1919 

1918 

1917 

1916 

1915 

1914 

1913 

1912 

1911 

1910 

1909 



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24 



turn of the century came in 1921 — less than 8,000,- 
000 bales. This was caused principally by the boll 
weevil, as the crop was reduced 31 per cent by 
boll-weevil damage, with an all-time record of 53 
per cent damage from all causes. While the 1921 
acreage was 99 per cent of the 1909 cotton acre- 
age, the production was but 7,987,000 bales, or 80 
per cent of the 1909 production. The states that 
suffered most severely from the boll weevil were 
Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, and South 
Carolina. 

From 1924 through 1931, with a partial recovery 
in yields and a new high level of acreage, our pro- 
duction averaged 14,940,000 bales, reaching a high 
of 17,755,000 bales in 1926. This represented an 
average increase of 2,000,000 bales annually over 
the 1909-13 production. A downward trend began 
with the 1932 season as acreage was reduced, 
largely because of the unusually low price of cot- 
ton during the preceding year, when at times it 
fell as low as 5 cents per pound. Following this 
our production was affected by decreased cotton 
acreage. It has ranged from 9,472,000 bales in 
1934 to 12,438,000 bales in 1942, with the excep- 
tion of the 1937 crop. The latter established a 



peak of 18,250,000 bales, even though acreage had 
been reduced 23 per cent below the 1926-31 aver- 
age. 

Rank In and Quantity of Production 

Table XIV shows, by decades from 1910, total 
cotton ginnings, by states, the rank of each state 
in this respect and the percentage of the ginnings 
in each state to the total. 

Table XV shows total cotton ginnings, by states, 
for each year from 1909 to 1943. For many years 
Texas has ranked well ahead of all other states in 
cotton production. It normally produces around 
25 per cent of the entire United States crop. For 
the 11-year period 1909-19, Georgia ranked sec- 
ond, producing approximately 2,000,000 bales an- 
nually and from 8 per cent to 13 per cent of the 
entire cotton crop. Beginning with 1920, Georgia 
gradually gave way to other states in rank of pro- 
duction. Georgia felt the effects of the boll weevil 
in the early 1920's as much as or more than any 
other state and has never fully recovered. It has 
not produced as much cotton in any year subse- 
quent to 1919 as it did in its lowest of the preced- 
ing 11 years. 



TABLE XIV 

Total Cotton Ginnings in the United States, Percentage of Total Ginnings, and 
Rank in Production by Ginnings in Each State 

(Running Bales) 



Total Ginnings (000 Omitted) 
1910 1920 1930 1940 



Rank In Production 
1910 1920 1930 1940 



Per cent of Total U. S. Ginned (') 
1910 1920 1930 1940 



United States 


11,568 


13,271 


13,756 


12,298 


















Alabama 


1,192 


670 


1,445 


769 


4 


8 


3 


7 


10.3 


4.9 


10.6 


6.2 


Florida 


67 


19 


51 


18 


12 


15 


15 


16 


.5 


.1 


.4 


.1 


Georgia 


1,812 


1,447 


1,597 


1,007 


2 


3 


2 


4 


15.2 


10.5 


11.4 


8.1 


Louisiana 


247 


390 


705 


449 


10 


9 


9 


11 


2.1 


2.9 


5.1 


3.6 


Mississippi 


1,212 


900 


1,458 


1,238 


3 


7 


4 


3 


10.9 


6.7 


10.5 


10.0 


North Carolina 


753 


949 


801 


749 


8 


6 


8 


8 


6.1 


6.9 


5.6 


5.9 


South Carolina 


1,211 


1,652 


1,015 


946 


5 


2 


5 


5 


10.0 


12.1 


7.2 


7.7 


Tennessee 


321 


315 


371 


503 


9 


10 


10 


10 


2.9 


2.4 


2.7 


4.0 


Virginia 


16 


22 


43 


25 


13 


14 


16 


15 


.1 


.2 


.3 


.2 


Arkansas 


798 


1,182 


863 


1,477 


7 


5 


6 


2 


7.1 


9.0 


6.3 


12.0 


Missouri 


59 


76 


153 


399 


11 


12 


13 


12 


.5 


.6 


1.1 


3.1 


Oklahoma 


920 


1,303 


857 


765 


6 


4 


7 


6 


7.9 


9.9 


6.1 


6.3 


Texas 


2,950 


4,148 


3,886 


3,111 


1 


1 


1 


1 


26.3 


32.3 


29 . 


25.9 


Arizona 


( 2 ) 


105 


151 


189 


( 2 ) 


11 


12 


13 


( 2 ) 


.8 


1.1 


1.6 


California 


6 


78 


256 


530 


( 2 ) 


13 


11 


9 


( 2 ) 


.6 


7.9 


4.3 


New Mexico 


( 2 ) 


( 2 ) 


96 


125 


( 2 ) 


( 2 ) 


14 


14 


( 2 ) 


( 2 ) 


.7 


.9 


All Other 


10 


13 


6 


17 










.1 


.1 


( 3 ) 


.1 



(0 Based on equated bales of 500 lbs. gross weight. 

( 2 ) Included in "All Other States." 

( 3 ) Less than 1/10 of 1 per cent. 

Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, "Cotton Production and Distribution Bulletins"; October 1, 
1943, Consolidated Cotton Report. 



25 



Mississippi has ranked next to Texas in cotton 
production in 12 of the last 18 years, having pro- 
duced from 8 per cent to 15 per cent of the total 
crop. Arkansas and Alabama closely follow. The 
irrigated-cotton states of Arizona, California, and 
New Mexico combined have grown approximately 
5 per cent of the American cotton crop in each of 
the last nine years, an increase over former years. 
The construction of Boulder Dam doubtless has in- 
creased cotton production in Arizona and South- 
ern California. 

The boll-weevil infestation began in the South- 
eastern states in 1915 and reached a climax in 1923 
in the Carolinas and Southeast. During this pe- 
riod, many cotton farms were abandoned and the 



preponderance of cotton production shifted from 
east of the Mississippi River to west of it. 

Table XVI shows the percentage of total gin- 
nings in the United States east and west of the 
Mississippi River at 5-year intervals from 1910 
to 1940. It also shows the states where the great- 
est reductions and increases have occurred. 

The largest reductions east of the river have 
been in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and South 
Carolina. West of the river, Arkansas, Missouri, 
Arizona, California, and New Mexico have shown 
the largest increases. There were 730,000 more 
bales ginned in the United States in 1940 than in 
1910. 



TABLE XV 

Production: Ginnings of Cotton, United States, By States, 1909-43, Exclusive of Linters 

(In Running Bales, Counting Round as Half Bales) 



Beginning 
Aug. 1 

1909 
1910 

1911 
1912 
1913 
1914 
1915 

1916 
1917 
1918 
1919 
1920 

1921 
1922 
1923 
1924 
1925 

1926 
1927 
1928 
1929 
1930 

1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 

1936 
1937 
1938 
1939 
1940 

1941 
1942 
1943 



United 
States 

10,072,731 
11,568,334 

15,553,073 
13,488,539 
13,982,811 
15,905,840 
11,068,173 

11,363,915 
11,248,242 
11,906,480 
11,325,532 
13,270,970 

7,977,778 

9,729,306 

10,170,694 

13,639,399 

16,122,516 

17,755,070 
12,783,112 
14,296,549 
14,547,791 
13,755,518 

16,628,874 
12,709,647 
12,664,019 
9,472,022 
10,420,346 

12,141,376 
18,252,075 
11,623,221 
11,481,300 
12,297,970 

10,494,881 
12,438,033 
11,127,957 



Virginia 

10,746 
16,095 



31,099 
25,499 
24,569 

25,277 
16,357 

27,975 
20.155 
25,235 
23,076 

21,898 

16,680 
27,011 
51,982 
40,180 
54,016 

51,891 
30,705 
44,764 
47,991 
42,713 

42,477 
31,360 
34,413 
32,997 
27,619 

30,543 
40,215 
11,083 
10,345 
24,865 

28,257 
28,333 
19,710 



North 
Carolina 

633,746 
753,087 

1,126,276 
906,351 
837,995 
970,479 
737,354 

693,672 
656,656 
919,338 
857,253 
949,484 



803,620 
879,294 
053,402 
860,147 
,147,340 



1,246,754 
879,677 
869,248 
767,043 
800,582 

771,186 
680,279 
690,506 
640,924 
579,313 

606,681 
780,594 
398,467 
461,715 
748,644 

568,978 
735,079 
610,848 



South 
Carolina 

1,137,382 
1,210,968 

1,692,146 
1,224,245 
1,418,704 
1,560,195 

1,174,213 

970,702 
1,267,135 
1,581,726 
1,462,277 
1,652,177 

786,039 
517,464 
793,817 
837,815 
929,040 

1.025,991 
738,550 
744,390 
833,054 

1,015,273 

1,010,271 
722,229 
728,025 
684,619 

738,744 

804,232 
996,175 
641,679 
852,081 
945,718 

408,098 
694,577 
692,780 



Alabama 

1,040,137 
1,192,179 



1,695,284 
1,328,297 
1,483,669 
1,731,751 
1,025,818 

552 , 679 
520,906 
789,265 
716,655 
670,330 

587,669 
819,870 
599,140 
985,653 
1,356,402 

1,470,404 
1,173,430 
1,096,624 
1,307,664 
1,444,886 

1.385,021 
933,756 
951,074 
936,080 

1,033,457 

1,135,027 

1,566,602 

1,064,422 

769,696 

768,525 

774,441 
892,458 
931,573 



Georgia Tennessee 



1,850,125 
1,812,178 

2,794,295 
1,812,778 
2,346,237 
2,723,094 
1,937,730 

1,852,104 
1,885,054 
2,117,860 
1,678,758 
1,447,159 

822,621 

735,874 

612,812 

1,030,202 

1,192,952 

1,498,473 
1,111,399 
1,053,205 
1,339,835 
1,597,475 

1,393,715 
861,789 

1,093,385 
974,868 

1,052,662 

1,086,458 

1,473,984 

850,691 

908,990 

1,006,657 

637,469 
853,348 

848,522 



240,757 
321,103 

430,027 
267,439 
366,786 
372,068 
296,222 

378,064 
238,806 
317,962 
301,408 
314,811 

297,555 
385,860 
235,344 
355,919 
515,130 

442,052 
355,975 
423,471 
504,282 
371,433 

577,994 
467,491 
428,881 
396,655 
315,602 

422,197 
633,335 
473,761 
432,383 

502,871 



Florida 

61,877 
67,172 

94,471 
58,833 
66,700 
90,648 
55,354 

50,979 
48,178 
34,951 
17,317 
19,443 

12,202 
27,428 
13,628 
19,756 
40,208 

33,231 
17,361 
20,053 
29,849 
51,118 

43,405 
15,580 
24,135 
24,343 
26,653 

27,654 
35,363 
21,950 
9,671 
17,916 



Mississippi 

1,073,105 
1,212,104 

1,169,066 
1,004,376 
1,251,841 
1,217,883 
925,509 

800,190 
886,269 
1,193,122 
950,907 
900,371 

816,961 

985,787 

622,617 

1,116,350 

1,985,524 

1,857,525 
1,346,489 
1,462,021 
1,875,979 
1,458,488 

1,719,454 
1,161,188 
1,132,152 
1,121,332 
1,226,295 

1,862,515 
2,561,778 
1,655,956 
1,536,263 
1,238,286 



574,121 14,885 1,387,558 
602,538 14,536 1,886,981 
479,791 14,146 1,782,989 
Table 15 Cont. on Next Page 



26 



TABLE XV— (Continued) 







Production : 


Ginnings of Co 


tton, United Sti 


ites, By States 


, 1909-43, Kxc 


lusive ot L,w 


ters 










(In Running Bales, Counting Round as 


Half Bales) 








Begin- 
















New 


All Other 


ning 
Aug. 1 


Louisiana 


Arkansas 


Oklahoma 


Texas 


Missouri 


Arizona 


California 


Mexico 


States 


1909 


258,459 


697,603 


552,678 


2,469,331 


44,444 


C 1 ) 





0) 


2,341 


1910 


246,788 


798,156 


919,842 


2,949,968 


58,822 


« 


6,000 


( l ) 


9,872 


1911 


380,826 


908,014 


1,016,538 


4,107,152 


91,119 


0) 


9,817 


0) 


16,760 


1912 


374,793 


770,937 


1,005,109 


4,645,309 


53,538 


( l ) 


7,934 


( l ) 


11,035 


1913 


436,865 


1,038,293 


842,499 


3,773,024 


63,761 


0) 


22,411 


0) 


31,868 


1914 


452,261 


999,237 


1,232,638 


4,390,290 


78,409 


C 1 ) 


48,374 


C 1 ) 


13,326 


1915 


336,813 


789,583 


622,176 


3,068,852 


46 , 644 


0) 


28,586 


0) 


6,962 


1916 


441,121 


1,102,671 


813,419 


3,562,789 


60,466 


0) 


43,664 


0) 


13,420 


1917 


629,719 


953,587 


955,342 


3,041,726 


58,937 


21,140 


58,974 


W 


5,658 


1918 


582,698 


957,118 


585,149 


2,610,337 


59,797 


54,215 


71,479 


0) 


6,228 


1919 


303,035 


867,177 


1,002,178 


2,960,335 


62,667 


58,472 


59,082 


( i ) 


4,935 


1920 


389,569 


1,182,010 


1,302,610 


4,148,399 


76,328 


105,191 


77,892 


0) 


13,298 


1921 


284,330 


788,047 


477,777 


2,129,660 


68,145 


42,926 


34,809 


6,094 


2,643 


1922 


345,407 


1,010,520 


637,003 


3,125,758 


139,881 


44,132 


28,473 


12,383 


7,161 


1923 


373,812 


643,643 


665,904 


4,212,248 


124,876 


77,704 


55,313 


28,333 


6,319 


1924 


498,386 


1,086,814 


1,506,077 


4,850,956 


192,981 


109,950 


79,938 


55,858 


12,417 


1925 


912,246 


1,594,389 


1,680,304 


4,098,249 


292,950 


115,359 


122,260 


64,706 


23,441 


1926 


826,179 


1,513,382 


1,760,644 


5,477,788 


215,769 


120,089 


128,835 


70,206 


15,857 


1927 


543,153 


979,481 


1,009,626 


4,229,367 


116,024 


90,281 


89,998 


64,920 


6,676 


1928 


685,868 


1,216,241 


1,187,042 


4,941,545 


146,921 


145,731 


171,042 


82 , 177 


6,206 


1929 


797,727 


1,395,869 


1,125,614 


3,803,211 


220,907 


149,467 


254,126 


86,296 


8,877 


1930 


704,750 


863,443 


856,748 


3,886,126 


153,337 


150,545 


256,337 


95,841 


6,423 


1931 


876,593 


1,836,132 


1,235,856 


5,068,779 


280,367 


110,922 


171,238 


93,762 


11,702 


1932 


599,473 


1,283,432 


1,072,022 


4,307,383 


300,695 


67,135 


124,361 


67,485 


13,989 


1933 


469,260 


1,014,645 


1,235,851 


4,220,275 


237,927 


92,934 


210,682 


86,121 


13,753 


1934 


473,333 


848,997 


329,845 


2,314,894 


230,368 


113,184 


251,523 


83,689 


14,371 


1935 


541,360 


841,518 


562,704 


2,849,750 


182,823 


131,541 


232,725 


70.178 


7,402 


1936 


742,565 


1,265,622 


289,740 


2,825,420 


301,267 


187,771 


436,322 


104,999 


12,363 


1937 


1,050,629 


1,808,840 


756,419 


4,952,378 


390,219 


310,199 


723,035 


153,812 


18,498 


1938 


651,537 


1,301,275 


545,196 


2,964,238 


329,401 


191,888 


415,466 


92,275 


13,936 


1939 


717,921 


1,359,884 


511,850 


2,736,764 


427 , 824 


199,830 


435,085 


93,831 


17,167 


1940 


448,996 


1,477,110 


764,706 


3,111,051 


399,488 


188,811 


530,479 


124,705 


17,157 


1941 


.310,501 


1,381,214 


692,303 


2,557,702 


475,175 


176,870 


395,569 


103,769 


25,223 


1942 


572,347 


1,427,890 


687,465 


2,917,035 


414,286 


187,703 


399,361 


104,374 


19,722 


1943 


712,534 


1,086,963 


373,470 


2,701,195 


296,366 


128,539 


333,051 


102,132 


13,348 



(!) Included in "All Other States." 

Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census, Cotton Production and Distribution Bulletins 180, 179, 175, 173, 
169, 164, 156, 147, 137, and 125, and Cotton Ginned from the crop of 1943, April 27, 1944. 



TABLE XVI 

Cotton Production East and West of the Mississippi River and for Selected States 

-Percentage of Total 



East 
West 



1910 

57 
43 



1915 

56 
44 



1920 

45 
55 



1925 

45 
55 



Running Bales (000 Omitted) 



EAST OF RIVER- 
Alabama 
Florida 
Georgia 
South Carolina 



-Total C 1 ) 



1910 
6,585 
1,192 
67 
1,812 
1,211 



WEST OF RIVER— Total (») 4,980 

Arkansas 798 

Missouri 59 

Arizona 

California 6 

New Mexico 

(») These totals will not equal total U. S. ginning, as some few bales are ginned 
outside the Cotton Belt. 

Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Cotton Production and Distribution 
Bulletins. 



1 

930 


1935 


1940 


49 


48 


43 


51 


52 


57 


1940 




Reduction 


5,253 




1,332 


767 




425 


18 




49 


1,007 




805 


946 




265 
Increase 


7,045 




2,065 


1,477 




679 


399 




340 


189 




189 


530 




524 


125 




125 



27 



Farm Income 

In the greater part of the Cotton Belt, cotton is 
by far the most important crop and the largest 
source of income. The farm value of the cotton 
crop from year to year is of great significance to 
anyone interested in the region as a market. In 
many farm families receipts from the cotton crop 
represent all the money available for purchases of 
consumer goods. Statistics for 1935 showing how 
income from cotton and cottonseed compares with 
total farm marketing income and total income pay- 
ments are presented in Table XVII. The year 
1935 has been used in this particular survey be- 
cause it is the last year prior to the present war 
for which many of the figures are available. 

Of $1,706,000,000 received from farm market- 
ing of all crops in the Cotton Belt during 1935, the 
cotton and cottonseed crop brought $737,100,000, 
or 43 per cent. In 1935, in the Southern states 46 
per cent, and in the Southwestern states 69 per 



cent, of all cash income from farm marketings of 
crops was received from cotton and cottonseed. 
Obviously, the cotton crop is more important in 
some states than others. For example, the per- 
centage of the total income from crops that was 
derived from cotton and cottonseed in 1935 was in 
Mississippi 87 per cent, in Alabama 84 per cent, 
in Texas 78 per cent, and in Arkansas 76 per cent. 
On the other hand, the income from cotton and 
cottonseed in Florida and Virginia was less than 
4 per cent of the total income from all crops in 
these states. 

Probably a more reliable gauge of the impor- 
tance of the cotton crop to the Cotton Belt states 
would be a comparison between the value of the 
cotton and cottonseed crop and the total income 
payments. In 1935 the value of the cotton crop 
was 5 per cent of the total income payments in 
these states combined. However, in the cotton- 
growing states in the South and Southwest 7 per 



TABLE XVII 
Income From Farm Marketings and From Cotton, andJTotal Income Payments, 1935 

(000 Omitted) 











Per cent Cotton 




Estimated Income 


Per cent Cotton 




and Cotton- 


Cash Income 


from Cotton 


and Cotton- 




seed to 


from Farm 


and Cotton- 


seed to 


Total Income 


Total Income 


Marketings 


seed Crop 


Total 


Payments 


Payments 


$2,978,380 


$737,622 


25 


$57,368,000 


1 


1,706,475 


737,126 


43 


14,362,000 


5 


57 


100 




25 




83,940 


70,441 


84 


539,000 


13 


79,122 


1,694 


2 


616,000 


3 


112,054 


72,903 


65 


741,000 


10 


85,846 


38,252 


45 


623,000 


6 


102,537 


89,662 


87 


331,000 


27 


187,808 


41,182 


22 


812,000 


5 


83,685 


52,249 


62 


391,000 


13 


57,565 


22,054 


8 


693,000 


3 


59,184 


1,939 


3 
46 


798,000 


.2 


851,754 


390,376 


5,540,000 


7 


29 


53 




10 




79,573 


60,722 


76 


357,000 


17 


42,392 


12,107 


29 


1,535,000 


.8 


70,666 


37,266 


53 


661,000 


6 


262,448 


203,737 


. 78 
69 


1,958,000 


10 


455,079 


313,832 


4,511,000 


7 


15 


43 




8 




25,064 


10,329 


i 
44 


177,000 


6 


364,042 


17,286 


5 


3,993,000 


.4 


10,545 


5,303 


50 

8 


141,000 


4 


399,651 


32,918 


4,311,000 


.8 


13 


4 




7 





United States 

Total Cotton Belt 

Per cent Cotton Belt of U. S. 

Alabama 

Florida 

Georgia 

Louisiana 

Mississippi 

North Carolina 

South Carolina 

Tennessee 

Virginia 

TOTAL SOUTH 

Per cent Total South of U. S. 

Arkansas 
Missouri 
Oklahoma 
Texas 

TOTAL SOUTHWEST 

Per cent Total Southwest of U. S. 

Arizona 
California 
New Mexico 

TOTAL FAR WEST 

Per cent Total Far West of U. S. 

Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, "Cotton Production and Distribution Bulletin 174, Table 
10"; U. S. Department of Commerce, "State Income Payments 1929-37," May 1939; U. S. Department of Commerce, Statistical 
Abstract of the United States, 1942. 



28 



cent of the total income payments was derived 
from the cotton crop. Even this figure tends to 
understate, as the total includes such minor cot- 
ton-producing states as Florida and Virginia. In 
the major cotton-producing states of Mississippi, 
South Carolina, and Alabama cotton income rep- 
resented 27 per cent, 13 per cent, and 13 per cent, 
respectively, of the total income payments. In 
Arkansas and Texas 17 per cent and 10 per cent, 
respectively, of total income payments in these 
states were derived from the cotton crop. It is 
unusual that a single agricultural product pro- 
vides from 10 to 27 per cent of the total income of 
the people of a state. 

The revenue received from cotton in Arizona 
and New Mexico has been on the increase in the 
last 15 years. In 1935 it represented 44 per cent 
and 50 per cent of the total income from farm crop 
marketings, and 6 per cent and 4 per cent of total 
income payments, respectively. 

Ginneries 

Cotton ginneries in the United States have 
decreased steadily in number since 1909, when 
there were 26,669 active ginneries. In 1941 there 
were but 11,148, or 43 per cent of the 1909 total. 
This reduction has taken place generally through- 
out the Cotton Belt. 

The reduction in ginneries has been caused by 
two factors: (1) cessation of ginning on local 
plantations, and (2) replacement of existing gin- 
neries by materially larger ones. With compar- 
able production in 1909 and 1941, the average 
number of bales ginned per active establishment 
in 1909 was 278 bales, whereas in 1941 it was 941 
bales. 

This development reflects, among other things, 
the development of good all-weather roads 
throughout the Cotton States. By making longer 
hauls of cotton to the gin both economically and 
conveniently possible, such roads promoted the 
use of larger and better-equipped gins at the ex- 
pense of the former small neighborhood gins. 

Bale Covering 

Several kinds of material are used for bagging 
to cover cotton bales. New or rewoven wide-mesh 
jute weighing approximately 2 pounds per linear 



yard is used more extensively than any other type 
of material. Next in importance is sugar-bag 
cloth, closely woven from long jute fiber. This is 
obtained from second-hand raw-sugar bags and 
weighs approximately 1% pounds per linear yard. 
These two materials comprise about 94 per cent 
of all material used for covering cotton bales. The 
remaining 6 per cent comprises second-hand cotton 
and burlap bagging. 

Usually a pattern for covering square 1 cot- 
ton bales consists of six linear yards of material 
ranging from 42 to 54 inches wide. A survey by 
the Department of Agriculture for the 1930 sea- 
son showed that 62.5 per cent of square bales were 
covered with new or rewoven jute, 31.6 per cent 
with sugar-bag cloth, and 5.9 per cent with rerolled 
and miscellaneous bagging; and that 95.2 per cent 
of the bales were covered with six yards of mate- 
rial each. A round bale is bound with new closely- 
woven burlap which completely covers it, and no 
ties are used. 

Transportation Value of Ties and Bagging 

All bales, except round, are bound with 9 pounds 
of steel baling ties. Therefore, for a crop of 12,- 
000,000 bales of cotton there is offered annually for 
transportation from steel mills to gins and com- 
presses 108,000,000 pounds or 54,000 tons of steel 
ties. 

In addition, approximately 13 pounds of bag- 
ging are used for covering the bales. Thus, for 
a crop of 12,000,000 bales of cotton there is also 
offered 156,000,000 pounds, or 78,000 tons of bag- 
ging for transportation. 

Ginning Season 

Cotton is ginned from August to March. 
Usually it is ginned as soon as it is picked. Table 
XVIII illustrates the progress of ginning during 
the 1910 and 1940 seasons. The bulk of the crop 
usually has been ginned by November 1. 

Cottonseed 

After ginning, a small percentage of the seed 
is saved for planting the next crop. The remain- 
der is sold to cottonseed-oil mills, where it is 
crushed, after being delinted. The cotton gin de- 
taches the longer fibers of cotton, leaving on the 



1 All types of bales except round bales. 



29 



seed a short, fuzzy lint which must be at least par- 
tially removed before milling. The delinting 
process separates this fuzz from the seed. The 
product is known commercially as cotton linters. 
Linters move back into the cotton trade. They will 
be discussed in more detail hereafter in this study. 1 



The great importance of the cottonseed industry 
deserves emphasis. During the eight seasons 
1927-34, a total of 37,101,000 tons of cottonseed 
were crushed by the cottonseed-oil industry. In 
the handling of this seed from farmer to final con- 
sumer, the distribution of cottonseed-products dol- 
lars was as shown in Table XIX 1 . 



1 See pages 81-E 



1 A study of cottonseed and cottonseed oil is now in 
preparation. 



TABLE XVIII 
Cotton Ginnings in the United States, by Periods 



— 1910 

Ginnings Per Cent 



-1940- 



Aug. 1 to Sept. 1 
Sept. 1 to Oct. 1 
Oct. 1 to Nov. 1 
Nov. 1 to Dec. 1 
Dec. 1 to Jan. 16 
Jan. 16 to Mar. 1 



353,011 

6,992,942 

2,793.759 

1,113,435 

315,187 



3 

60(0 

24 

10 

3 



Ginnings Per Cent 

573 , 577 
3,317,408 
5.162,698 
1,780.604 
1,064,458 

399,225 



5 

27 

42 

14 

9 

3 



11,568,334 100 12.297,970 100 



(') September 1 to November 1 in 1910; not separated on October 1 in that year. 

Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, Cotton Production and Distribution Bulletin 179. 



TABLE XIX 
Distribution of Gross Revenue from Cottonseed in the United States 



Amount received by farmers 

Transportation 

Conversion costs 

Mill profits 

Seed merchants . gross spread 

(Ginners, Middlemen, etc.) 
TOTAL GROSS REVENUE 



8-year Total 
1927-34 

$883,660,000 

55,182,000 

279,700,000 

6,065,000 

150,966,000 



Weighted Ratio Based 
Average on Cotton- 
Per Ton seed Dollar 



$23 . 82 

1.49 

7.54 

.17 

4.06 



$.643 
.040 
.203 
.004 
.110 



$1,375,573,000 $37.08 $1,000 
Source: National Cottonseed Products Association, "Cottonseed and Its Products," February 1937, page 27. 



30 



Chapter III 
Cotton Marketing 



Channels of Marketing 

Cotton is our only important farm crop which 
cannot be used until it is processed. The process- 
ing must be carried on in specialized plants away 
from the farm. By contrast, corn and the small 
grains are immediately usable for feed. The cot- 
ton farm supplies raw materials for a long series 
of commercial processing operations unequaled in 
the case of any other important field crop. Fur- 
thermore, cotton is among the agricultural prod- 
ucts most needing co-operation from the railroads 
to facilitate orderly, successful marketing. 

As cotton comes from the field it is not in mar- 
ketable condition; it must be ginned and baled. 
In most instances, it thereafter must be further 
compressed into a more-compact bale and be clas- 
sified with respect to grade and staple. 

The latest available study \ for the 1935 sea- 
son, shows that 18 per cent of the cotton crop was 
sold by the growers in lots of one bale each. Ap- 
proximately 50 per cent was sold by growers 
in lots of less than 10 bales ; 15 per cent in lots 
of 50 bales or more ; and only about 6 per cent in 
lots of 100 bales or more. 

In the main, textile mills and other cotton con- 
sumers require even-running lots of the same 
grade and staple 2 . The individual farmer is sel- 
dom if ever able to supply such lots. Cotton as it 
comes from one particular farm, even though a 
few bales, may be of various grades and staples, 
due to seed mixture, weather, and soil. It must 
be shipped to a compress or some central concen- 
tration point for classification and there assembled 
with other stocks of like grade and staple to make 
up a matched lot, before final movement to the 
consuming points. The usual unit of sales con- 
tract is 100 bales. 

Due to varying grade and staple, sometimes 10 
or 15 bales from one farm may, on reshipment 
from a concentration point, find their way to as 
many destinations, depending on the grade and 
staple of each particular bale. It is the grade and 
staple of a bale that determine its destination in 
the consuming markets. Transportation provis- 
ions must and do recognize the impracticablity, 
as a rule, of shipping cotton in matched lots di- 



1 U. S. Department of Agriculture. "Marketing Practices 
in Producers Local Cotton Markets," J. W. Wright, May, 
1938. 

2 See following pages for explanation of these terms. 



rectly from the point of production and ginning 
to the point of consumption. 1 

Distribution from Gin Points 

A small amount of cotton moves direct from 
ginning point to consuming point. Such move- 
ments usually are for extremely short distances. 
The great bulk of the crop moves from the gin 
to interior compress or concentration points or to 
the ports, where there are compress or warehouse 
facilities. 

Compress — Concentration — Warehousing 

At a compress or concentration point, the cot- 
ton is weighed and tagged for identification. Each 
bale is then cut so that a suitable sample (usually 
about one pound) may be taken to be classed for 
grade, staple and character. A complete record 
of the bale is made. It is then compressed, sorted, 
and either reshipped or stored, if at a compress. 
If at a concentration point, it moves through the 
same procedure, except that it may not be com- 
pressed there ; many bales are compressed in tran- 
sit enroute to ultimate destination. After the bale 
covering has been cut for sampling, the cut is re- 
paired with patches. Often a bale is cut and 
patched several times before it is finally dis- 
posed of. 

The cotton compress or warehouse provides the 
cotton owner with convenient, safe and adequate 
storage, including protection from weather and 
fire. For him and for the buyer of the bale, it 
provides a sample of guaranteed authenticity. 
The authenticity of the sample is of great im- 
portance to the entire cotton trade, because value 
depends upon the classification of grade and staple 
as determined from the sample. 

The depositor of each bale placed in storage re- 
ceives therefor a negotiable warehouse receipt 
which identifies the individual bale and shows its 
weight. This receipt is readily accepted by all 
concerned with cotton as evidencing the bale it- 
self. By its negotiation ownership of the bale 
freely passes from one to another in the market- 
ing process. 

Definition of Grade 

Grade of cotton, as the term is most widely 
understood, is determined by the three factors of 
color, foreign matter, and ginning preparation. 



1 See page 48, Rates. 



32 



These elements have been standardized in the of- 
ficial Government standards for grades of Ameri- 
can cotton 1 . Grade is largely influenced by wea- 
ther conditions prior to and at harvest, time of 
and care in harvesting, condition of the cotton at 
the time of ginning, the kind and condition of the 
ginning equipment used, and the method of its 
operation. 

The usefulness of cotton for spinning and the 
quality of the finished products tend to vary di- 
rectly with the grade of the cotton. Spinning 
tests 2 have shown, for example, that the quantity 
of waste removed from the lint by pickers and 
cards varies on the average from about 6 per cent 
for strict good middling to 15 per cent for good 
ordinary. In addition, manufacturing costs tend 
to be reduced and the quality of the finished prod- 
ucts tends to be improved by the use of higher 
grades. 

Grade Names 

Grade classification begins with the color of the 
lint, according to which the respective grades are 
extra-white, white, spotted, tinged, yellow-stained, 



Table XX lists the designations officially adopted 
for describing the several grades of American Up- 
land cotton. 

Grade standards are not the same for cotton of 
the various world growths, and information with 
respect to the supply, by grades, of cotton other 
than American is very incomplete. Data on the 
supply of American cotton in the United States 
by grades according to the official standards are 
available for each year since 1928. They show 
that large proportions of the supply are of the 
white grades, middling, strict middling and good 
middling. 

Distribution of American Upland Cotton by Grades 

Table XXI shows for selected years from 1928 
to 1942 the distribution of the American crop ac- 
cording to color and grade, in percentages of the 
total crop. 

White grades for the 15-year period 1928-42 
averaged 84 per cent of the entire American Up- 
land cotton crop. For the five years 1933-37 white 
grades were 6 per cent below the 15-year average, 
while the average for the 1928-32 and 1938-42 



TABLE XX 

Official Standards for Grade of American Upland Cotton 





Extra 








Yellow 


Gray 


White 


White 

No. 1, or Middling Fair 

No. 2, or Strict Good Middling 


Spotted 


Tinged 


Stained 


GMG 


GMEW 


No. 3, or Good Middling 


GMSp. 


GMT 


GMYS 


SMG 


SMEW 


No. 4, or Strict Middling 


SMSp. 


SMT 


SMYS 


MG 


MEW 


No. 5, or Middling 


MSp. 


MT 


MYS 




SLMEW 


No. 6, or Strict Low Middling 


SLMSp. 


SLMT 






LMEW 


No. 7, or Low Middling 


LMSp. 


LMT 






SGOEW 


No. 8, or Strict Good Middling 










GOEW 


No. 9, or Good Ordinary 









Source: U. S. Dept. of Agriculture, Miscellaneous Publication No. 310, "The Classification of 
Cotton", May, 1938, Table 3, p. 17. 



gray, and no-grade. Within the major group the 
terms Middling Fair, Strict Good Middling, Good 
Middling, Strict Middling, Middling, Strict Low 
Middling, Low Middling, Strict Good Ordinary, 
and Good Ordinary, provide a descending scale for 
variation in minor color attributes, variation in 
foreign matter, and variation in ginning prepara- 
tion. Only the White standards include the entire 
range from Middling Fair to Good Ordinary. 



1 See Cotton Standards Act, 1923, Appendix, page 94. 

2 U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Technical Bulletin 
699," page 5. 



periods was slightly above the 15-year average. 
By and large, throughout the Cotton Belt there 
has been no material advancement in the produc- 
tion of white grades during the past 15 years. 
White grades were 88 per cent of the crop in 1942 
against 87 per cent in 1928. 

So many factors influence the grade of cotton 
that there is no consistency in the grades from 
year to year, as may be seen from Table XXI. 
Some states, however, do grow more white cotton 
than others. For instance, during the 15-year 
period 1928-42 the average production of white 



33 



TABLE XXI 

Color and Grade of American Upland Cotton 







White 


Grades 






Middling Grade or Better 




l 




(Percentage of all Grades) 






(Percentage of all Grades) 






1928 


1933 


1938 


1942 


1928 


1933 1938 


1942 


United States 


87 


69 


78 


88 


81 


84 76 


52 


Alabama 


85 


66 


82 


92 


96 


95 83 


61 


Florida 


62 


59 


51 


57 


76 


96 91 


54 


Georgia 


79 


69 


82 


83 


71 


85 80 


53 


Louisiana 


96 


76 


55 


93 


86 


84 71 


50 


Mississippi 


97 


88 


71 


98 


88 


91 70 


61 


North Carolina 


72 


74 


89 


98 


85 


90 52 


36 


South Carolina 


65 


63 


86 


91 


79 


86 81 


43 


Tennessee 


86 


83 


70 


87 


80 


85 67 


66 


Virginia 


84 


73 


63 


99 


86 


85 55 


5 


Arkansas 


93 


84 


83 


96 


79 


73 64 


58 


Missouri 


86 


71 


77 


93 


41 


34 43 


48 


Oklahoma 


86 


31 


88 


74 


68 


79 88 


32 


Texas 


88 


66 


76 


77 


80 


84 85 


44 


Arizona 


89 


84 


84 


83 


96 


96 89 


70 


California 


98 


96 


88 


77 


89 


96 91 


81 


New Mexico 


93 


82 


83 


88 


89 


99 90 


93 



Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Cotton Quality Statistics, 1942-43." 



grades was 92 per cent in Arkansas, and 90 per 
cent in Mississippi and California, but only 70 
per cent in Florida, 74 per cent in Oklahoma, and 
80 per cent in Texas. 

In 1942, due to heavy rains throughout most 
of the Cotton Belt, the grades Middling or better 
were reduced to 52 per cent of all grades. In 
Oklahoma, Texas, North Carolina, and South 
Carolina less than 50 per cent of the crop was 
above Middling grade ; in Georgia and Arkansas, 
less than 60 per cent; and in Mississippi only 61 
per cent. 

Of the grades other than white, spotted pre- 
dominated, averaging 15 per cent for the 15-year 
period 1928-42. Other grades make up only about 
1 per cent of the crop. 

Definition of Staple Length 

Staple length of cotton means the normal length 
by measurement of a typical portion of its fibers 1 . 
It is determined commercially by a process known 
as "pulling" the staple. Length of staple is largely 
influenced by the variety and by the conditions 
under which the cotton is grown and ginned. 

Length of staple has an important bearing upon 
the strength and fineness of the yarns that can be 
produced and the costs of the yarns. The longer- 
staple cottons are generally considered essential 
for spinning fine yarns and yarns with high 
strength requirements, but they may be used also 
in manufacturing medium and coarser yarns. 



i 1 ) Order of Secretary of Agriculture, October 25, 1918. 



Short staples are used mainly in the production of 
coarse yarns. Ordinarily, yarns of a given specifi- 
cation can be manufactured from cotton represent- 
ing a considerable range in length of staple, but 
the use of the longer staples tends to reduce the 
manufacturing cost, although increasing the raw- 
cotton cost. 

Table XXII shows for selected years from 1928 
to 1942 the distribution of the American Upland 
crop according to staple length, in percentages of 
the total crop. 

In 1928, the first year for which these statistics 
are available, the bulk of the supply of American 
Upland cotton was 29/32" and less in length. Of 
the entire crop 56 per cent was that length or 
below. Since 1928 staple lengths of American cot- 
ton have gradually increased. In the 5-year pe- 
riods 1928-32, 1933-37, and 1938-42 cotton 29/32" 
and shorter represented 51 per cent, 41 per cent 
and 21 per cent, respectively, of our entire crop. 
A further indication of the decided trend toward 
longer staples is shown by a comparison of indi- 
vidual years. In 1928, 56 per cent of the crop; in 
1933, 40 per cent; in 1938, 22 per cent; and in 
1942, 18 per cent, was 29/32" and shorter staple 
length. 

Some states have shown more progress than 
others in growing longer staples. For instance, 
between 1928 and 1942 staple lengths of 29/32" 
and less were reduced in Alabama from 94 per 
cent to 15 per cent of the crop, in Georgia from 
83 per cent to 11 per cent, in Mississippi from 35 



34 



*. 



TABLE XXII 

Percentage 29/32" or Shorter Staple American Upland Cotton is of All Lengths 

1928 1933 1938 1942 

United States 56 40 22 18 



Alabama 


94 


Florida 


84 


Georgia 


83 


Louisiana 


43 


Mississippi 


35 


North Carolina 


80 


South Carolina 


62 


Tennessee 


62 


Virginia 


89 


Arkansas 


40 


Missouri 


21 


Oklahoma 


49 


Texas 


54 


Arizona 


12 


California 


14 


New Orleans 


14 



82 
88 
73 
22 
12 
44 
38 
34 
78 

10 
18 
38 
44 



37 

74 

31 

4 

2 

11 

4 

12 



12 

4 

53 

40 

4 
3 

7 



15 
12 
11 

4 

1 

6 

10 ' 

2 

3 

1 
37 
51 

4 
1 
6 



Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Cotton Quality Statistics, 1942-43." 



per cent to 1 per cent, in North Carolina from 80 
per cent to 6 per cent, and in Arkansas from 40 
per cent to 3 per cent. On the other hand, Texas 
and Oklahoma have made little progress in grow- 
ing longer staples. In Texas 54 per cent of pro- 
duction in 1928 and 51 per cent in 1942 was 29/32" 
or less. In Oklahoma the corresponding figures 
are 49 per cent in 1928 and 37 per cent in 1942. 
The relative precentages of the various staples in 
selected years are illustrated on Chart D. 

Long Staple Cottons 

The term "long staple," when applied to Ameri- 
can cotton, means cotton iy 8 " and longer in staple 
length. During recent years, the United States 
production of long-staple cotton has consisted al- 
most entirely of Upland cotton with a staple length 
up to 1-11/32" and a small quantity of American- 
Egyptian or Pima with a staple length of from 
1%" to 134". 

During the 15-year period 1928-42 the annual 
production of all American cotton averaged 12,- 
855,000 running bales, of which 741,000 bales (6 
per cent) were long-staple Upland cotton. 

Mississippi produces most of our long-staple 
Upland cotton. During the 15-year period 1928- 
42, it accounted for 57 per cent of our total pro- 
duction. For those years the state's average an- 
nual yield was 423,000 running bales. Arkansas 
is the second-largest producer, with an average 
annual production of 91,000 bales, or 12.3 per cent. 



California is third, with an average production of 
85,000 bales, or 11.5 per cent. No other single 
state produces as much as 5 per cent of the yield 
of this type of cotton. The combined production 
of Louisiana, South Carolina, and Texas averaged 
11 per cent of the total long-staple crop during the 
15-year period. 

In Mississippi most of this cotton is produced 
in a comparatively small area known as the "Del- 
ta," which comprises about 12 counties lying be- 
tween the Mississippi and Yazoo rivers. In Ar- 
kansas it is grown in a comparatively few counties. 
In Arizona more than three-fourths of the long- 
staple cotton comes from Maricopa County, and in 
California practically all of it is produced in five 
counties. In South Carolina the center of produc- 
tion is in and around Darlington County. 

Definition of Character 

Character comprises those elements of cotton 
quality not included in grade and staple length. 
At present there are no prescribed standards of 
character, nor is there entire agreement as to all 
the quality elements that should be included in 
character. 

The ultimate purpose of character classification 
is to round out the appraisal of different cottons 
for marketing and manufacturing purposes. Cot- 
tons of a given grade and staple produce satis- 
factory yarn in some cases and unsatisfactory 
yarn in others. The reason for the difference is. 



35 



Percentage of 
Total Crop 



Chart D 

AVERAGE STAPLE LENGTH OF AMERICAN 

UPLAND COTTON IN THE UNITED STATES 

1928, 1932, 1936, 1940, AND 1942 CROPS ' 



Percentage of 
Total Crop 




CO (Nl *o O Csl 

N CI M if ^ 

o- o- o- o* c* 



Shorter 
than 7/ 8 " 



%" and 
29/32" 



15/16" and 
31/32" 



I" and 
1-1/32" 



1-1/16" and 
I- 3/32" 



|l/ 8 " and 
longer 



Source: U. S. Dept. of Agriculture, Bureau of Agricultural Economics. 



36 



usually ascribed to character. Through experi- 
ence, classers and millmen become familiar with 
the characteristics of cotton that will or will not 
give good spinning results for their particular 
purpose. Good cottons are usually spoken of as 
"hard-bodied" or "strong" cottons, and poor cot- 
tons are usually referred to as "soft", "weak", 
"irregular", "weak and wasty", or "perished". 

American Egyptian Cotton 

American Egyptian cotton is grown only in Ari- 
zona, New Mexico, and Texas. American mills, 
mostly in New England, consume practically all of 
it. The annual production of this type of cotton 
for the 14-year period 1928-41 averaged 22,000 
bales, of which 81 per cent was of iy 2 " to 1-19/32" 
length. 

Grade factors for this cotton differ from those 
for "Upland" cotton. American Egyptian cotton 
is more yellowish in color than Upland. American 
Egyptian cotton is ginned on roller gins and there- 
for looks more stringy and lumpy. 

Standards for American Egyptian cotton are 
prepared in physical form in five grades, numbered 
in order of descending quality from 1 to 5. There 
are also four descriptive half-grades which fall 
between the respective full grades. Cotton lower 
than No. 5 is designated as "below Grade 5". 

Grade and Staple 

The American Egyptian cotton crop ginned in 
the United States in 1941 totaled 57,929 bales, 
which were distributed by grades as follows: 



Grade 


Bales 


Percentage 


1 and V/i 


22 


,470 


38 


8 


2 and 2 H 


23 


,077 


39 


8 


3 and3H 


10 


,787 


18 


6 


4 and 4 Vi 


1 


,307 


2 


3 


5 and below 




288 




5 



TOTAL 



57,929 



100.0 



Compresses 

During the 1937 season there were 367 com- 
presses in the United States, of which 266, or 72 
per cent, had high-density facilities. Compresses 
employ about 26,000 persons annually. 

Table XXIII shows the number of cotton com- 
presses in the United States in 1937, by states, with 
a separation of those having high-density facilities. 

Of the total, Texas had 39 per cent, of which 81 
per cent had high-density facilities. Mississippi 
ranked next with 14 per cent of the total, of which 





TABLE XXIII 




Number of Cotton Compresses and Those Having High-Densit} 
Facilities 




Season 1937 




State 


Total 
Number 


Number with High 
Density Facilities 


Alabama 

Florida 

Georgia 

Louisiana 

Mississippi 

North Carolina 

South Carolina 

Tennessee 

Virginia 


16 

2 

23 

31 

52 

2 

8 

14 

2 


14 
2 

15 

25 

27 

1 

6 

10 

2 


Sub-total 


150 


102 


Arkansas 

Oklahoma 

Texas 


36 
23 

142 


20 

20 

115 


Sub-total 


201 


155 


Arizona 
California 
New Mexico 


■.1 

2 


1 
3 

1 


Sub-total 


8 


5 


Illinois 
Maine 
New Jersey 


1 
6 

1 


3 

1 


Sub-total 


8 


4 


TOTAL 


367 


266 



Source: University of Tennessee, Department of Agricultural 
Economics and Rural Sociology, Agricultural Experiment Station, 
April 1938. 

52 per cent had high-density facilities. 

The usual cost over most of the Cotton Belt for 
standard compression is 60 cents per bale, ap- 
proximating 12 cents per hundred pounds. For 
high-density compression, whether from standard 
or gin density, the usual rate is 75 cents per bale, 
or about 15 cents per hundred pounds. Rates are 
somewhat higher in some of the western states, 
particularly Arizona and California. 

Cotton Markets 

In the processes of concentration and subse- 
quent distribution, cotton flows through a succes- 
sion of markets which fall into four general types, 
viz.: 

1. Local, country or primary; 

2. Central concentration; 

3. Mill or spinners; 

4. Export. 

As will appear later, a locality may have more 
than one marketing function and therefore may 
properly belong in two or more of the foregoing 
classifications. For example, New Orleans is a 



37 



leading export market, but it also is an important 
central concentration market for shipments to in- 
terior mills, and it may also serve as a local market 
for nearby cotton growers. A mill market also 
may be a local market. 

Markets may be further classified in several dif- 
ferent ways, as, for example, according to the type 
of merchandising engaged in, as spot, futures or 
speculative markets. 

Local, Country or Primary Markets 

The Cotton Belt farmer normally sells his cotton 
in local markets, which are found throughout the 
Belt. Nearly all local markets have cotton gins. 
Usually the grower sells to one or another of seven 
types of middlemen who operate in these markets 
buying and selling cotton, as follows : 

1. Ginners who buy and sell cotton as well as 
ginning it; 

2. Local men who operate as cotton merchants ; 

3. Representatives of the farmers' co-operative 
association ; 

4. Proprietors of country general stores, many 
of whom sell to farmers on credit throughout 
the year and take cotton in payment ; 

5. Resident or traveling representatives of the 
large merchants whose headquarters are in 
the central markets ; 

6. Resident and traveling buyers for cotton 
mills ; 

7. Factors or commission men. 

Central Concentration Markets 

Central concentration markets fall into two 
classes — interior markets and ports 1 . About 
three-fourths of the crop moves from the country 
markets into between 20 and 30 large central mar- 
kets and thence into mill markets or to ports for 
export. 

The most important buyers in the concentration 
markets are the large international cotton mer- 
chants, who buy cotton from country-market mer- 
chants in all parts of the Cotton Belt and ship it to 
mill markets in all parts of the world. Also, 
various types of cotton brokers operate in these 
markets, buying or selling for others on a commis- 
sion basis. 



1 U. S. Department of Agriculture, Wright, J. W. and 
McClure, J. H., "The Distribution of American Raw 
Cotton, Season 1932-33," 1937. 



Mill Markets 

Mill markets are located at or near large mill 
centers. Their principal function is the sale of 
cotton to spinners. Mill markets are more nu- 
merous than central markets, but much less nu- 
merous than country markets. 

One-half to two-thirds of the sellers of cotton in 
these markets are spot brokers, who sell on com- 
mission for merchants of the central markets and 
the larger country markets. The rest are either 
local traders who get their cotton in surrounding 
country markets or resident employees of mer- 
chants whose headquarters are in the central mar- 
kets. Mill representatives who buy directly for 
the mills are also active in the mill markets. In 
the southern states these buyers purchase part of 
their needs from growers who bring the cotton 
into the mill itself, and from growers and local 
agencies in nearby country markets. About one- 
fourth of the cotton used by southern mills is 
bought in this way. 

Export Markets 

Export markets are any markets where cotton 
is sold for export. Most of the export markets also 
are large concentration centers. One requirement 
of an export market is that it must have high- 
density compresses to prepare bales for ocean ship- 
ment. An interior concentration center having 
high-density compresses may be also an export 
market. Exporters' agents operate in these mar- 
kets, usually buying cotton from local buyers. 

Spot Markets 

Any market where cotton is bought and sold may 
be a spot market. A spot transaction means buy- 
ing or selling physical cotton for immediate deliv- 
ery. It is not necessary that the cotton be "on the 
spot" in the particular market where it is sold. 

Under the Cotton Futures Act, 1916, the Secre- 
tary of Agriculture has designated fourteen bona- 
fide spot cotton markets, of which ten — Charleston, 
Augusta, Savannah, Montgomery, New Orleans, 
Memphis, Little Rock, Dallas, Houston and Gal- 
veston — are the basis for published quotations. 
The other four designated markets are Norfolk, 
Atlanta, Mobile and Fort Worth. 

Cotton Futures Exchanges 

Cotton futures exchanges in the United States 
are corporations operated on a nonprofit basis 



38 



k^ 



ander strict rules and regulations in accordance 
with the Cotton Futures Act, 1916, and the Com- 
modity Exchange Act, 1936 1 . Their principal pur- 
poses are to provide suitable facilities for trading, 
to establish principles for trading, to adjust con- 
troversies, to maintain uniformity in rules, regu- 
lations, and usages ; to adopt prescribed standards 
of classification, to provide information connected 
with cotton, and generally to promote and facili- 
tate trading in cotton. Adherence to strict rules 
of trading procedure and standards of conduct is 
enforced, largely through standing committees. 

Futures Markets 

A cotton-futures market is a place where con- 
tracts are made to receive and to deliver stated 
quantities of cotton during a specified future 
period at a fixed price for the basic grade and 
staple length, in accordance with rigidly stand- 
ardized rules and regulations. These contracts 
are standardized with respect to size of the con- 
tract unit, grades and staple lengths deliverable; 
classification, weighing, warehousing, and inspec- 
tion of the cotton ; margin requirements ; time, 
place, and manner of making delivery ; and other 
important considerations. This standardization, 
in accordance with law and with the rules of the 
cotton exchanges, facilitates trading by minimiz- 
ing misunderstandings in regard to terms and con- 
ditions of sale. 

Futures transactions are used primarily for 
hedging and speculative purposes. There are three 
cotton-futures exchanges in the United States, at 
New Orleans, New York, and Chicago. A number 
of such exchanges also existed abroad before the 
present war, the most important at Liverpool, 
England. Others were at Bremen, Germany; La- 
Havre, France ; Osaka, Japan ; Alexandria, Egypt ; 
and Bombay, India. The first four dealt in 
American Upland, the latter two in Egyptian and 
Indian cottons. 

The unit of futures contracts in the United 
States generally is 50,000 pounds in 100 bales. 
Some contracts in New Orleans and all contracts 
in Chicago are for 25,000 pounds in 50 bales. 

Deliveries of cotton in settlement of the contract 
obligation must be made from approved storage 
places at a designated delivery point during a 



specified month. The price paid for the basic 
grade and staple length 1 is fixed in the contract. 
Provisions are made for additions to and deduc- 
tions from the contract price for cotton of other 
tenderable grades and staple lengths offered in 
settlement. The particular designated point at 
which delivery is made, the day of the month on 
which the cotton is tendered, and the number and 
combinations of tenderable grades and staple 
lengths to be delivered are at the option of the 
seller, but notice of intention to deliver generally 
must be given 5 business days prior to the date of 
delivery. 

Delivery on New York contracts may be made 
at New York, Norfolk, Charleston, Savannah, Mo- 
bile, New Orleans, Houston, and Galveston; on 
New Orleans contracts at New Orleans, Houston, 
and Galveston ; and on Chicago contracts at Hous- 
ton and Galveston. 

Tenderable Cotton 

Tenderable means cotton that is tenderable in 
settlement of futures contracts under the Cotton 
Futures Act. Statistics showing the amount of 
tenderable American Upland cotton have been 
compiled since 1928. 

Upland cotton shorter than %" staple length or 
below Low Middling White or Strict Middling 
Spotted in grade, and all colored cottons, are un- 
tenderable in settlement of futures contracts. All 
American Egyptian cotton below White or Extra 
White and shorter than 1-1/32" is untenderable. 

During the years 1928 to 1939, inclusive, be- 
tween 78 per cent and 94 per cent of the Amer- 
ican crop was tenderable under futures contracts. 
During this time non-raingrown (or irrigat- 
ed) cotton, was between 90 and 99 per cent 
tenderable. However, revision of the futures 
contracts in 1940 limited the tenderable quali- 
ties of non-raingrown cottons to white and ex- 
tra-white, Middling or better, 1-1/32" and longer 
in staple. This materially reduced the tender- 
ability of these cottons, and the percentage of 
tenderable fell to 37 per cent in 1940. This change 



95. 



1 For summary of these acts, see Appendix, pages 94 and 



1 The basic staple length was middling % " prior to Aug. 
15, 1939. It was then changed by amendment of the Cotton 
Futures Act to 15/16". The value of other cottons is ex- 
pressed as so many points "on" or "off." A point is 1/100 
of a cent. "On" means above and "off" means below the 
base price. Thus 50 points on means one-half cent above 
Middling 15/16"; 50 points off means the reverse. 



39 



had the effect of reducing the average percentage 
of cotton tenderable in the United States to 76 
per cent in 1940 and 77 per cent in 1941, con- 
trasted with 94 per cent in 1938 and 91 per cent 
in 1939. 

Financing the Marketing of Cotton 

Cotton moves in trade from the farmer to the 
spinner or exporter on a cash basis, each seller 
in turn receiving cash as he disposes of his hold- 
ings. Cotton prices apply to the gross weight of 
the bales, including covering and fastenings. 

Cotton being a world crop, its price normally 
is determined in world markets, from which it is 
reflected to the smaller markets and thence to the 
farmers' market. As cotton is not a perishable 
commodity, it is the year's supply and the esti- 
mated year's demand or consumption that deter- 
mine the price. Each year's supply is made up of 
the carry-over from the previous year and the 
current year's production. It is in the great future 
markets — in the United States, New York prin- 
cipally, then New Orleans and Chicago — that these 
major forces of demand and supply meet and reg- 
ister their strength. 1 

Prices in Futures Markets 

Operating in the futures markets are 1) 
merchants and others who hedge spot-cotton 
transactions, and 2) speculators. The main dif- 
ference between these two groups is that the hedg- 
ing element uses the futures market to avoid the 
necessity of forecasting price changes, whereas 
the speculators seek to profit through forecasting 
price changes. The great volume of trading and 
the fact that futures contracts can be settled at 
their maturity by purchase and delivery of spot 
cotton serve ordinarily to keep the futures prices 
approximately related to the spot-cotton situation. 

Futures markets have such facilities for as- 
sembling information that changes in the supply - 
and-demand situation for cotton are readily re- 
flected in futures prices. Information on these 
changes and prices is widely disseminated for the 
use of buyers and sellers of spot cotton. Conse- 
quently, prices of spot cotton tend to move some- 
what in accordance with prices of futures con- 
tracts. Thus, there is a reciprocal relationship be- 
tween spot and futures prices. 



1 U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Foreign and 
Domestic Commerce, "Cotton Production and Distribution 
in the Gulf Southwest," page. 199. 



The prices of spot cotton and of futures con- 
tracts generally move together not because one is 
determined by the other but because they are both 
determined largely by the aggregate of present 
and anticipated future conditions of demand and 
supply. The fact that prices of spot cotton and 
of futures contracts do vary irregularly and some- 
times widely from their normally expected rela- 
tionship indicates some independence in their 
movements. 

Prices in Central and Other Markets 

In the central markets the prices are deter- 
mined by 1) the price of futures, 2) the volume 
and nature of mill purchases, and 3) the extent 
to which the grower wishes to sell his cotton. 

In the larger primary markets, where buyers 
are operating on limits fixed by merchants, they 
translate those limits into the price they will pay 
for the cotton. Such a buyer must be able to 
classify cotton fairly well as to grade and staple, 
as he is given limits in terms of particular differ- 
ences. 

In some local markets, especially the smaller 
ones, cotton is sold on a "hog-round" basis, with 
no atempt to evaluate differences in quality. The 
bargaining is on the basis of price only, with no 
consideration to the grade and staple of individual 
bales. The different markets have developed repu- 
tations as offering cotton of a certain grade, and 
prices settle at the corresponding level. The 
farmer who brings inferior cotton to market re- 
ceives the same price as his neighbor who pro- 
duces high-grade, good-staple cotton. The local 
buyer operating in such a market under instruc- 
tions from a larger merchant is given a stated 
price as a limit. The average of the grade and 
staple of all the cotton received at the market 
roughly determines the general price paid. 

Price Differences Among Markets 

Table XXIV shows yearly average spot prices 
for middling cotton at the ten designated mar- 
kets 1 at 5-year intervals from 1915 to 1940. 

Prices of cotton of the same grade and staple 
differ somewhat from one central market to an- 
other. These differences are due largely to dif- 
ferences in transportation costs to centers of con- 
sumption, differences in terms and conditions of 
sale, and differences in the character of the cotton 



1 See page 38. 



40 



> 



TABLE XXIV 
Spot Prices Per Pound For Middling Cotton At Ten Designated Markets 
Year Beginning August 1 



' 






-7/8-inch- 






15/16-inch 


Market 


1915 


1920 


1925 


1930 


1935 


1940 


Norfolk 


11.62 


16.92 


19.78 


10.11 


11.76 


11.19 


Augusta 


11.56 


16.62 


19.53 


9.73 


11.82 


11.47 


Savannah 


11.72 


17.20 


19.53 


9.73 


11.82 


11.23 


Montgomery- 


11.37 


16.37 


18.98 


9.28 


11.40 


11.02 


New Orleans 


11.69 


16.55 


19.71 


10.08 


11.65 


11.06 


Memphis 


11.83 


17.20 


19.77 


9.22 


11.50 


10.86 


Little Rock 


11.84 


16.69 


19.70 


9.11 


11.41 


10.79 


Dallas 


11.51 


15.79 


19.64 


9.19 


11.20 


10.65 


Houston 


12.00 


16.33 


20.00 


9.74 


11.56 


10.86 


Galveston 


12.06 


16.89 


20.12 


9.82 


11 . 54 


10.86 


Average ( J ) 


11.72 


16.66 


19.68 


9.61 


11.55 


11.00 



p) Averages of monthly averages of the ten markets. 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Agricultural Statistics 



sold. Prices in markets located in surplus-produc- 
ing areas that are long distances from consuming 
centers generally are lower than prices of cotton 
of the same quality sold on the same terms and con- 
ditions in markets near centers of consumption. 

As may be seen from Table XXIV, 1940 spot 
prices for Middling 15/16" cotton in Augusta, a 
market in the consuming area of the Southeastern 
States, averaged 0.61 cent per pound higher than 
at Houston, an important port market, and 0.82 
cent higher than at Dallas, a market in a surplus- 
producing area far removed from consuming cen- 
ters. 

The Cotton Futures Act, 1916, requires that 
commercial differences for grade used in the set- 
tlement of futures-contract obligations be deter- 
mined from sales of spot cotton in not less than 5 
of the 10 bona-fide spot-cotton markets designated 
as such by the Secretary of Agriculture 1 . To carry 
out the law, there is maintained in each of these 
markets a competent quotations committee, the 
organization and personnel of which are subject 
to the approval of the Chief of the Bureau of 
Agricultural Economics, U. S. Department of 
Agriculture. The committee is required to obtain 
complete, detailed information not later than the 
close of business each day as to all sales of spot 
cotton since the preceding close, including the 
grades, the prices or basis prices, and the terms 
and conditions of sale. 

In each of the 10 markets daily quotations are 
published at the close of the futures market show- 
ing the price of Middling 15/16" cotton and the 
premiums and discounts for 31 other grades. 



1 See page 38. 



1942", Table 155. 
Cotton Prices Received 

The farm price compiled by the Department of 
Agriculture differs from market prices in that it 
covers whatever grade the farmer sells, which 
varies from year to year and from place to place, 
and is taken as of one day in the month, not an 
average for the month. Market prices are for mid- 
dling grade, with premiums and discounts for va- 
rious grades and staple lengths. Information is 
not available to determine the grade upon which 
farm prices are based. Farm prices for the years 
1915 to 1943, inclusive, together with market 
prices of spot cotton, and average parity prices, 
1922 to 1943, are shown in Table XXV. Chart E 
graphically illustrates the relationship of farm and 
market prices, by years, from 1915 to 1942. 

As shown in Table XXV, cotton prices rose dur- 
ing World War I, reaching their peak in 1919. 
Soon after the war, in 1920 and 1921, they slump- 
ed, but as a result of the short crops of 1921-22-23 
prices again increased. Cotton acreage in the 
United States and in foreign countries was expand- 
ing by leaps and bounds, with resultant high pro- 
duction. The then-record acreage and production 
of 1926 caused a severe drop in price. This tem- 
porarily checked further acreage expansion, and 
prices resumed their upward trend, halting only 
at the beginning of the general depression in 
1929. They then fell sharply to an all-time low in 
1931, when the market price averaged 5.9 cents. 
Beginning in 1929, the federal government in an 
effort to support cotton prices offered loans on 
varying bases. 

A small price rally occurred in 1932, and by 
1933 the price of cotton was almost 11 cents a 



41 



TABLE XXV 

Average Season Price for Cotton Received by Farmers, and Average Spot Price at Ten Designated Markets for 
Middling Grade 7/8" (prior to 1937), and 15/16" (thereafter), Also Average Parity Price 

(Cents Per Pound) 







Spot Ten 


Average 






Spot Ten 


Average 




Received by 


Designated 


Parity 




Received by 


Designated 


Parity 


Year 


Farmers 


Markets 


Price 


Year 


Farmers 


Markets 


Price 


1915 


11.3 


11.7 




1929 


16.4 


15.8 


20.3 


1916 


19.6 


19.0 






1930 


9.5 


9.6 


18.6 


1917 


27.7 


29.0 






1931 


5.7 


5.9 


16.1 


1918 


27.6 


9.8 






1932 


6.5 


7.2 


14.6 


1919 


35.6 


38.3 






1933 


9.7 


10.8 


15.7 


1920 


13.9 


16.7 






1934 


12.4 


12.4 


16.3 


1921 


16.2 


18.1 






1935 


11.1 


11.6 


15.7 


1922 


23.8 


25.8 


20.7 


1936 


12.3 


12.7 


16.5 


1923 


31.0 


30.1 


20.6 


1937 


8.4 


9.1 


16.0 


1924 


22.6 


24.2 


21.0 


1938 


8.6 


9.0 


15.3 


1925 


18.2 


19.7 


20.9 


1939 


9.1 


10.1 


15.5 


1926 


10.9 


14.4 


20.7 


1940 


9.9 


11.0 


15.7 


1927 


19.6 


19.7 


20.7 


1941 


16.8 


18.3 


17.9 


1928 


18.0 


18.7 


20.7 


1942 


19.0 


20.1 


19.5 












1943 


19.9 


20.7 


20.8 



Source: U. S. Dept. of Commerce, "Cotton Production and Distribution"; Bulletins, U. S. Department of Agriculture, 
Agricultural Statistics, 1942, Table 155. War Food Administration, Weekly Cotton Market Review, Sept. 2, 1944. Although 
the Cotton Futures Act was not revised until Aug. 15, 1939, to make 15/16" cotton the base, most markets made 15/16" 
the base in 1937; hence the reason for the change in 1937 rather than in 1939. 



pound. The latter was due to the Agricultural Ad- 
justment Administration 1 program, which offered 
loans of 10 cents per pound during the season 
and cut the cotton crop by having growers plow 
under 10,500,000 acres of growing cotton. 

In the 1934 and 1935 seasons the Bankhead 
Act 2 reduced cotton acreage, and the Agricultural 
Adjustment Administration lent 12 and 10 cents 
a pound to growers in 1934 and 1935, respec- 
tively. The average market price in 1935 was ap- 
proximately twice that in 1931. 

In 1936, the Supreme Court declared the Agri- 
cultural Adjustment Act unconstitutional, and 
Congress therefore repealed the Bankhead Act. 
While acreage increased because of this action, 
consumption also increased. World industrial ac- 
tivity was mounting, and American cotton was in 
demand, advancing the average price of cotton 
slightly. 

With crop control regulation abolished and 
fairly good prices in 1936, cotton acreage in- 
creased in 1937 by almost 7,000,000 acres over 
1934, and production was the largest in our his- 
tory. This, coupled with the general business re- 
cession, caused average market prices to decline 
again in both 1937 and 1938. 

The outbreak of war in Europe in September, 
1939, increased cotton prices, and the average 
price per pound in 1939 was about 1 cent higher 



than in 1938, advancing again by about the same 
amount in 1940. As a result of the spread of hos- 
tilities during 1941, cotton consumption in the 
United States rose to the highest level on record. 
Commodity prices were increasing generally, and 
cotton rose to its highest price since the depression 
began in 1929. 

Distribution of American Cotton 

Table XXVI shows by states for the 1932 sea- 
son 1 the primary distribution of American cotton 
according to various types of destination. 

Table XXVI shows that most of the cotton pro- 
duced in the Southeast in 1932 moved to mill 
centers within that region. Of the total 1932 pro- 
duction, in Alabama 64 per cent moved to local 
consuming centers, in Georgia 78 per cent, in 
North Carolina 89 per cent, and in South Carolina 
80 per cent. For the crop as a whole only 25 per 
cent moved to local consuming centers. 

Interior markets and consuming centers in 
other states received the majority of the cotton 
produced in Arkansas, Mississippi, and Missouri ; 
67 per cent of Arkansas production moved to these 
markets; 49 per cent of Mississippi production, 
and 58 per cent of Missouri production. 

The predominant primary movement of cotton 
grown in 1932 in Arizona, California, Florida, 



1 For summary of the Agricultural Adjustment Act, see 
appendix, page 94. 

- For summary of this Act, see appendix, page 95. 



1 This was a special study which has not been repeated. 
Its findings may not be representative of present condi- 
tions. 



42 



o 



40 r- 














1 












' 






















39 - 












Chart E 

AVERAGE SEASON PRICE FOR COTTON RECEIVED BY FARMERS, 
AND AVERAGE SPOT PRICE AT TEN DESIGNATED MARKETS FOR 
MIDDLING GRADE %" (PRIOR TO 1937) AND 15/16" (THEREAFTER) 

(Per Pound) 




3R 














j 




■J7 














ll 




JO - 








f 








r 
1A. 








111 
















































TO 








-f+l - 

III 
















































r 








" 














































r 
1 1 








ll ' 
















































?0 








' ! 






/ 










































29 

?fl 














I 


1 














































' 








\ 








































27 




1 





1 

j 






/ 


\ 








































1 




— ^ 
1 






1 


1 








































Z6 
25 




1/ 




t 

1 




Ht~ 


I 










































1 




1 




1 


I 


v 






































24 




J 






1 


ir 


— v- 

1 








































23 
22 




1 






1 


j 




1 


\\ 






































1 








ir 






\\ 




Spot Price 




























21 










1 


7T 








































— 4 




20 


i 
I 








1 


ll 




































/ 




19 


1 

| 








1 


H — 

[/ 






\ 




ll 


\ 


























J 


II 

— /- 




18 
17 
16 
15 
14 


I 








1 / 


/ 










II 




























/ 




J 








1 


| 








t-\— 


7/ 




\\ 




































1 / 

1 , 










\\ 


// 






1 






















j 












/ 










I 


'/ 










































— ' 










\ 


"T 




























t 






13 


q- 








Farmer Price * 
























\ 














12 




















1 


f 














// 


\ 


/ 


4- 








1 






1 1 




































/ 




















10 
































// 


/ 






V 




^—^ 










9 


































// 








\ 


_— 












8 


































// 






















7 
































// 


/ 






















6 




















Source: Table XXV 


























b 
























































4 
























































3 


i 

lO 


*o 


I 


00 c~ 


o 


— 


■m r 

■M « 




CM « 


>J c 


O I 


«> e 


o c 

s c 


h < 

M t 


3 

n r 


- c 




1 1 


U 

1 e 
O 


> -i 

i r 

C 


t 
t t 
" c 


». 

n r 
>• c 


o < 

T r 


>■ < 
n 


> < 


— 
> 





43 



Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas 
was to the ports, the average port distribution for 
the United States representing 59 per cent of pro- 
duction. Of the total primary movement ac- 
counted for, more than 92 per cent in Texas and 
69 per cent in Oklahoma was to Texas ports. New 
Mexico cotton also moved principally to Texas 
ports. California ports received almost the entire 
production of Arizona and California, while Louis- 
iana cotton was concentrated largely at Lake 
Charles and New Orleans. 

Approximately 41 per cent of the primary dis- 



of the Department of Agriculture made a study 
of the 1930 cotton crop to determine the types of 
bales received throughout the cotton-consuming 
area. Table XXVII shows a breakdown of the dif- 
ferent types of bales received by the mills in the 
1930 season. This is the most recent information 
of its kind available, but may not be representa- 
tive of present conditions. 

Domestic cotton mills received 94 per cent of 
their requirements in standard-density and gin 
bales and 5.6 per cent in high-density bales. Only 
.3 per cent was received in round bales. Of the 94 



TABLE XXVI 

Primary Distribution of American Cotton — Season 1932 



Producing State 


Local Consum- 
ing Centers 
Per cent 


Alabama 

Arizona 

Arkansas 

California 

Florida 


64.0 
6.3 


Georgia 

Illinois 

Kentucky 

Louisiana 

Mississippi 


78.1 
3^8 


Missouri 
New Mexico 
North Carolina 
Oklahoma 
South Carolina 


88.9 

80.5 


Tennessee 

Texas 

Virginia 


47.1 

1.9 

55.0 


United States 


24.5 



Distribution to 

Interior Markets and 

Consuming Centers in Ports or foreign 

Other Regions Destinations 

Per cent Per cent 



2.0 

4.3 

66.6 

2^5 

1.3 

100.0 

100.0 

10.3 

48.7 

58.1 

1.6 

23.5 

.9 



38. 



16.4 



34.0 
95.7 
33.4 
93.7 
97.5 

20.6 



89.7 
47.5 

41.9 

100.0 

9.5 

76.5 

18.6 

14.3 

97.8 
43.4 

59.1 



Source: U. S. Dept. of Agriculture, 
Season 1932-33," January, 1937, Table 1, 
Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and 
included under "local consuming centers.' 

tribution of American cotton in 1932 was to do- 
mestic consuming centers, 83 per cent of this 
moving to mill centers in cotton-producing states 
and 17 per cent to mill centers in other states. 

Types of Bales Received by Domestic Mills 

In 1933 the Bureau of Agricultural Economics 



"The Distribution of American Raw Cotton, 
p. 14. Cotton from Alabama, Georgia, North 
Virginia distributed to mills in those states is 



per cent in standard-density and gin bales, 56.5 
per cent was received in standard-density and 37.5 
per cent in gin bales. No gin bales moved out of 
the cotton-growing states, indicating that gin 
bales usually move for short distances. Practically 
all high-density bales moved to the New England 
states, and round bales to Texas. 



44 







TABLE 


XXVII 






Types of Bales Received by D< 


)mestic Cotton Mills — Season 1930 








- Percentage of Each Type 


("if T^n 1 r* T? r , f i r^n r r^fi 








UL J_>d.lc IvcLclVcU 










Standard 


High 




State 


Gin 




Density 


Density Rou 


nc 


Alabama 


76.9 




23.0 


.1 




Connecticut 






75.0 


25.0 




Georgia 


57 .1 




42.5 


.3 


1 


Louisiana 


28.0 




63.0 


9.0 




Maine 






53.3 


46.7 




Massachusetts 






79.9 


20.1 




New Hampshire 






66.7 


33.3 




New York 






93.7 


6.3 




North Carolina 


30.0 




68.6 


1.4 




Oklahoma 


100.0 










Rhode Island 






80^0 


20^0 




South Carolina 


40.0 




57.8 


2.2 




Tennessee 


23.8 




76.2 






Texas 


60.3 




26.0 


6.9 6 


8 


Virginia 


48.8 




48.7 


2.5 




United States 


37.5 




56.6 


5.6 


3 



Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, Bureau of Agricultural Economics, 
American Cotton, Tare Practices and Problems, April, 1933, p. 27. 



45 



Chapter IV 
Transportation 



Rates 

For many years the railroads, with but minor 
exceptions, maintained only any-quantity rates on 
cotton. All cotton rates were subject to concentra- 
tion and transit arrangements that were very 
broad and permitted stopping shipments in transit 
for compression, warehousing or concentration. 
These arrangements authorized protection of 
through rates from origin to destination, with no 
limit on the number of times a shipment could be 
stopped, except that within the Southwest ship- 
ments were generally limited to two stops. 

On July 15, 1930, the Interstate Commerce Com- 
mission, after a comprehensive study of practical- 
ly all cotton rates, approved or prescribed rates 
on cotton from most producing areas. This pro- 
ceeding was titled Docket 17000, Rate Structure 
Investigation, part 3, Cotton 1 . Compressed-in- 
transit rates were approved or prescribed in this 
decision in the light of the existing compress 
charge of 15 cents east and 18 cents west of the 
Mississippi River. 

Southwest 

Maximum any-quantity rates on cotton from 
Southwestern origins prescribed by the Interstate 
Commerce Commission in Docket 17000, Part 3, 
became effective June 15, 1931. The Commission 
prescribed three bases of rates, viz., those on un- 
compressed cotton, i.e., cotton delivered uncom- 
pressed to go through to destination in that form ; 
compressed-in-transit, or as more commonly 
known, C.I.T. rates, i.e., rates on cotton tendered 
uncompressed to be compressed by and at the ex- 
pense of the carrier; and compressed rates, i.e., 
rates on cotton tendered the carrier compressed. 

Carload rates on cotton were first established 
by Southwestern carriers on August 29, 1932. 
These rates were subject to varying minimum 
weights and provided for the same transit ar- 
rangements as formerly applicable in connection 
with the any-quantity rates. They represented sub- 
stantial reductions under the any-quantity rates. 
For instance, from Memphis, Little Rock, and 
Oklahoma City to Boston, the established carload 
rates per hundred pounds were 74 cents, 89 cents, 
and 116 cents, respectively, as compared with the 
any-quantity rates of 118 cents, 128 cents, and 141 



cents, respectively. These rates were reduced again 
in the latter part of 1932. 

Within the Southwest and from the larger part 
of the Southwest to Texas and Louisiana Gulf 
ports a system of carload rates was established 
subject to minimum weights of 25,000, 50,000, and 
75,000 pounds, the measure of the rate being de- 
termined by the weight of the lading. Carload 
rates were likewise established in 1932 from the 
Southwest to the Southeast and Carolinas. Here 
the rates were made subject to minimum weights 
of 25,000 and 37,000 pounds. 

In October, 1933, the Interstate Commerce Com- 
mission instituted upon its own motion an in- 
vestigation into and concerning the lawfulness of 
the rates, rules, regulations, and practices ap- 
plicable to the transportation of cotton within and 
from the Southwest. As a result of this investiga- 
tion in Docket 26235, Cotton from and to Points 
in the Southivest and Memphis, 1 the Commission 
found the rates established to meet competition 
of other transportation agencies to be not unlaw- 
ful. 

South 

As in the Southwest, the rates on cotton within 
and from the South were before the Interstate 
Commerce Commission in Docket 17000, Part 3. 
The Commission approved the then-existing any- 
quantity rates within and from the Southeast and 
Carolina territories. These were commonly known 
as "Compromise" rates, agreed to by the railroads 
and the shipping interests in 1924. The Commis- 
sion did, however, prescribe maximum any-quan- 
tity rates within and from Mississippi Valley ter- 
ritory, which became effective June 15, 1931. 

Mississippi Valley 

Carload rates on cotton were established from 
the Mississippi Valley on August 29, 1932, simul- 
taneously with those from the Southwest. Rates 
to New England were likewise established to meet 
competition via truck to the Gulf, thence water 
to Boston, and truck to interior New England 
mills. The basic rates are subject to a minimum 
weight of 25,000 pounds. Rates subject to mini- 
mum weights of 35,000 and 50 r 000 pounds were 
made 9 cents and 15 cents less, respectively. 

There is now pending before the Interstate Com- 



1 165 ICC 595, 1930. 



T 208 ICC 677, 1935. 



48 



^ 



merce Commission, in Docket 28800, a complaint 
from compress interests to widen the spread be- 
tween the carload rates subject to minimum 
weights of 35,000 pounds and 50,000 pounds. The 
examiner has recommended a differential of 12 
cents instead of 6 cents between these rates, to be 
accomplished by increasing the rates on the 35,- 
000-pound minimum. 

Southeast and Carolinas 

The railroads in the Southeast and Carolinas 
also sought to meet truck competition by estab- 
lishing truck-competitive rates on an any-quantity 
basis. These rates, for distances up to approxi- 



mum were made slight differentials under the 
compressed-in-transit any-quantity rates. 

Movement via Various Transportation Agencies 

An indication that the truck-competitive rates 
did return cotton tonnage to the rails appears in 
Table XXVIII, which show the percentage dis- 
tribution by method of transportation of receipts 
of raw cotton at specified ports during the 1931 
and 1932 seasons. 

Comprehensive figures showing comparative 
cotton tonnage by rail and by truck are not avail- 
able. Table XXIX shows comparative receipts of 
cotton at Houston by rail and by truck, by years, 



TABLE XXVIII 
Distribution of Receipts of Raw Cotton at Specified Ports, by Method of Transportation 

Seasons 1931 and 1932 





Rail - 


percentage 01 i uta 
Truck — 


i 

— Water - 


Port 


1931 


1932 


1931 


1932 


1931 


1932 


Mobile, Ala 


34.4 


57.2 


16.1 


15.0 


49.5 


27.8 


Los Angeles, Calif. 


77.4 


60.3 


22.6 


39.7 






Savannah, Ga 


80.1 


83.7 


19.4 


16.3 


.5 




New Orleans, La 


36.1 


75.0 


3.5 


2.3 


60.4 


22.70) 


Charleston, S. C. 


37.4 


39.8 


54.5 


57.5 


8.1 


2.7 


Galveston, Texas 


94.0 


98.8 


6.0 


1.2 






Houston, Texas 


55.7 


64.0 


44.3 


36.0 




( 2 ) 


Norfolk, Virginia 


48.0 


41.5 


49.4 


50.9 


2.6 


7.6 



TOTAL 



61.0 



75.8 21.4 16.9 17.6 



7.3 



(!) Includes 5,853 bales by combined rail and water. 
( 2 ) Less than 1/10 of 1 per cent. 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Distribution of American Raw 
Cotton, Season 1932-33", J. W. Wright and J. H. McClure, January, 1937. 



mately 500 miles, became effective September 27, 
1932, in the Southeast and Carolinas. With only 
minor changes, they have remained in effect, and 
they have been applicable on less-than-carload cot- 
ton since September 6, 1938. 

Effective September 6, 1938, the railroads in 
this territory established carload rates subject to 
minimum weights of 25,000 and 50,000 pounds. 
The carload rates subject to 25,000 pounds mini- 



from 1932 to 1938, and in part of 1939. 

Table XXX shows for the seven seasons 1936-42 
cotton received at New Orleans via water, truck, 
and rail and the percentages handled by rail and 
by competing methods of transportation. 

Based upon the 4-year average 1936-39, water 
and truck carriers handled into New Orleans 13.9 
per cent while the rail lines handled 86.1 per cent 
of the total receipts. As a result of war conditions, 



TABLE XXIX 

Cotton Receipts at Houston by Truck and Rail 



Season 



Total 



1932 


2,873.099 


1933 


2,248,023 


1934 


1,086,677 


1935 


1,732,205 


1936 


1,303,137 


1937 


1,835,599 


1938 


1,042,192 


Aug. 1 to Oct. 13, 1939 


769,374 



Receipts-Bales 
By Truck By Rail 



947,836 
465,181 
335,715 
320,547 
279,342 
444,986 
424,069 
351,564 



1,925,263 

1,782,842 

750,962 

1,411,658 

1,023,795 

1,390,613 

618,123 

417,810 



Per cent of Total 
Truck Rail 



33.0 
20.7 
31.0 

18.5 
21.4 
24.2 
40.7 
45.7 



67.0 
79.3 
69.0 
81.5 
78.6 
75.8 
59.3 
54.3 



Source: I. C. C. Docket 26235, 237 I. C. C. 7-9, 1940. 



49 



the amount of cotton received at New Orleans via 
water and truck in the three years 1940-42 com- 
bined has been reduced to 2.4 per cent, whereas 
the receipts via rail have increased to 97.6 per 
cent of the total. 



Memphis and West Memphis, where but 25 per 
cent of the total was received by truck and 75 per 
cent by rail. Mr. Bennett testified that these latter 
were the largest cotton-receiving points among 
his compresses. 



TABLE XXX 

Receipts of Cotton at New Orleans By Various Methods of Transportation, and 

Percentage Distribution 







Bales (( 


)00 omi 


tted) 


Percentage 














Water 














and 


Season 


Rail 


Water 


Truck 


Total 


Rail 


Truck 


1936 


1,914 


223 


39 


2,176 


87.9 


12.1 


1937 


1.849 


309 


50 


2,208 


83.8 


16.2 


1938 


875 


92 


24 


991 


88.3 


11.7 


1939 


2,222 


363 


50 


2,635 


84.3 


15.7 


1940 


1,360 


75 


24 


1,459 


93.2 


6.8 


1941 


2,190 


2 


4 


2,196 


99.7 


.3 


1942 


1,984 




2 


1,986 


99.9 


.1 



Source: New Orleans Cotton Exchange, 73rd Annual 
Report, October 31, 1943. 



It was shown in I&S Docket 4646 — Substitution 
of Cotton in the Southwest 1 , that there has been 
considerable increase in the percentage of cotton 
received at compresses in the Southwest by truck. 

For the 1938 season the ratio of truck cotton to 
total receipts was as follows : — Arkansas, 59.1 per 
cent; Louisiana, 56.8 per cent; Missouri, 69.8 per 
cent; Oklahoma, 42.9 per cent; and Texas, 43.9 
per cent. Receipts of cotton by truck at compresses 
on the Missouri Pacific, other than Memphis, 
Tenn., and West Memphis, Ark., showed an in- 
crease from 36 per cent for the 1935 season to 
62 per cent for the 1938 season. Truck receipts 
of the Federal Compress and Warehouse Com- 
pany at interior points in Arkansas, Missouri, and 
Louisiana, and at Memphis, Tenn., compresses in- 
creased from 23.5 per cent in the 1935 season to 
47.2 per cent in the 1938 season. 

Vice President Alonzo Bennett, Federal Com- 
press and Warehouse Company, testified in I.C.C. 
Docket 28800 2 that compress receipts of cotton at 
all his company's 91 plants except Memphis, Tenn., 
and West Memphis, Ark., during the 1941 season 
amounted to 2,660,000 bales, of which 1,708,000 
moved via truck and but 952,000 via rail. In other 
words, 64.2 per cent of all cotton received at these 
compresses during that season moved via truck. 
The reverse was true of receipts of flat cotton at 



1 241 ICC 153, 1940. 

2 See page 49. 



Importance of Cotton to the Railroads 

Cotton is an important source of traffic and 
revenue to the railroads, particularly those in the 
Cotton Belt, comprising chiefly the Southern and 
Southwestern regions. 

Cotton handled by railroads in the United States 
moves in ordinary box cars. Class A equipment is 
not required. Prevailing minimum weights can be 
loaded in cars of 40' 7" length. 

In 1942 Class I railroads originated 227,400 cars 
of cotton. The total revenue from cotton in that 
year was $42,075,000, compared with $39,204,000 
in 1928. Average cotton revenue in 1942 was 
$80.39 per car and $3.72 per ton, contrasted with 
$61.32 per car and $5.40 per ton in 1928. 

In addition to $42,075,000 received by Class I 
railroads from cotton in 1942, they also received 
$5,900,000 from cotton linters, $1,450,000 from 
cottonseed and $19,900,000 from cotton fabrics in 
carloads, n.o.s. The last figure represents only a 
small part of the total revenue from this source, 
because most cotton fabrics move in less-than- 
carload lots. Still further, there are transported 
annually from points of manufacture to cotton 
gins and compresses, based upon a 12,000,000-bale 
cotton crop, about 54,000 tons of steel baling ties 
and 78,000 tons of bagging for covering the bales. 
Commercial fertilizer moved to and used on cotton 
farms during the 5 years 1938-42 averaged 1,490,- 
000 tons per year. 

Since the war began all tonnages per carload 



50 



have increased, due to the concerted efforts of 
shippers, carriers and the Office of Defense Trans- 
portation to load cars more heavily and conserve 
the car supply. In 1942 the average loading of cot- 
ton per car was 58 per cent of the average loading 
of all carload traffic and 80 per cent of the average 
loading of all products of agriculture. Yet, the 
average revenue per car of cotton was 3 cents 
greater than the average revenue for all carload 
traffic and but $4.54 per car less than the average 
revenue of all products of agriculture. Of $5,857,- 
000,000 total carload revenue received by Class I 



carriers in the same year, cotton revenue 
amounted to nearly 1 per cent. It was about 6 per 
cent of the total of $709,000,000 received from all 
products of agriculture. 

Table XXXI shows selected revenue and other 
traffic statistics for the movement of cotton via 
Class I railroads for the United States and the 
Southwestern 1 and Southern regions for the 



Several railroads, such as the AT&SF, CRI&P, and 
FW&DC, have mileage in the Southwest and handle sub- 
stantial amounts of cotton, but their statistics are not 
included by the Interstate Commerce Commssion in the 
Southwestern Region. 



TABLE XXXI 

Cotton Handled by Class I Railroads— United States 



Tons Carried 

Cars Carried 

Average Tons Per Car Originated 

Total Revenue 

Average Revenue Per Car 

Average Revenue Per Ton 

Cotton Tons Carried To all products of 

agriculture carried 
Cotton Tons Carried To all carload 

traffic carried 
Cotton Revenue To all products of 

agriculture revenue 
Cotton Revenue To all carload revenue 



1928 

7,256,628 

639,350 

11.4 

$39,204,343 

$61.32 

$5.40 



1933 

5,894.988 

382 , 643 

15.4 

$19,102,965 

$49.92 

$3.24 



Percentage Relationships 
3.2 3.9 

0.3 0.5 



5.3 

0.9 



4.2 
0.8 



1938 

4,947,730 

280,972 

17.6 

$17,477,458 

$62.20 

$3 . 53 



2.9 

0.4 

3.3 
0.6 



Cotton Handled by Class I Railroads— Southwestern Region 



Tons Carried 3,132,735 

Cars Carried 272,153 

Average Tons Per Car Originated 11.5 

Total Revenue $20,352,602 

Average Revenue Per Car $74 78 

Average Revenue Per Ton $6 50 

Cotton Tons Carried to all products of 
agriculture carried 

Cotton Tons Carried to all carload 
traffic carried 

Cotton Revenue to all products of agri- 
culture revenue 22 . 

Cotton Revenue to all carload revenue 5 1 



2,481,400 

164,711 

15.1 

9,235,945 

$56.07 

$3.72 

Percentage Relationships 

10.7 13.3 

1.9 2.7 

18.2 
4.5 



1,477,202 

80,926 

18.3 

5,119,306 

$63.26 

$3.47 



9.3 
2.3 



2.1 



Cotton Handled by Class I Railroads— Southern Region 



Tons Carried 2,537,321 

Cars Carried 238,366 

Average Tons Per Car Originated 10.6 

Total Revenue $12 , 769 , 594 

Average Revenue Per Car $53 . 57 

Average Revenue Per Ton $5 . 03 

Cotton Tons Carried to all products of 
agriculture carried 

Cotton Tons Carried to all carload 
traffic carried 

Cotton Revenue to all products of agri- 
culture revenue 11.6 

Cotton Revenue to all carload revenue 2 . 4 



2,108,606 

137,108 

15.4 

$6,061,610 

$44.21 
$2.87 



Percentage Relationships 
8.7 10.6 

0.9 2.2 



8.4 
2.1 



2,287,161 
136,353 

16.8 

$7,384,026 

$54.15 

$3.23 



11.4 
2.4 



9.0 
2.0 



1942 

11,323,566 

523,376 

21.6 

$42,075,066 

$80.39 

$3.72 



5.0 

0.4 

5.9 
0.7 



2,910,059 

143,316 

20.3 

12,681.442 

$88.49 

$4.36 



11.5 

1.4 

16.4 
2.4 



5,427,143 

249,313 

21.8 

$16,355,957 

$65 60 

$3.01 



16.4 

1.4 

15.4 
2.0 



Increase or 
Decrease 

Comnared 

1928 
Per cent 

56 1 

18 D 
89 1 
7 I 
31 I 
31 D 



7 D 
47 D 
77 I 
38 D 
18 1 
33 D 



114 I 
51 

106 1 
28 I 
22 I 
40 D 



Source: Interstate Commerce Commission, "Freight Commodity Statistics." 

51 



years 1928, 1933, 1938, and 1942. 

Table XXXII shows carloads, tons and average 
loading per car of cotton originated in the United 



western Region established carload rates on cot- 
ton in 1932. Cotton traffic in this region increased 
500,000 tons in 1932 over 1931 and another 165,- 



United States- 
Carloads Tons 



TABLE XXXII 

Cotton Tonnage Originated by Class I Railroads 

Southwestern Region 

Tons Per 
Carloads Tons Car 



1928 
1929 
1930 

1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 

1936 
1937 
1938 
1939 
1940 

1941 
1942 
1943 



309,056 
319,808 
243,204 

186,537 
205,204 
218,631 
148,238 
185,148 

235,502 
239,728 
172,128 
183,708 
174,175 

215,130 
227,360 
217,995 



3,423,519 
3,534,707 
2,713,927 

2,159,481 
2,530,484 
3,058,483 
2,202,165 
2,607,359 

3,347,724 
3,420,028 
2,588,697 
2,877,804 
2,939,020 

3,864,371 
4,174,197 
4,053,359 



Tons Per 
Car 

11.1 
11.1 
11.1 

11.6 
12.3 
14.0 
14.8 
14.1 

14.2 
14.3 
15.0 
15.7 
16.9 

18.0 
18.4 
18.6 



Southern Region 



160,695 
145,562 
107,049 

90,572 

109,230 

105,712 

67,330 

63,375 

81,617 
83,200 
60,377 
70,378 
72,963 

92,175 
90,953 
89,685 



1,899,665 
1,759,378 
1,292,700 

1,130,676 
1,433,131 
1,629,868 
1,137,643 
1,094,195 

1,432,856 
1,405,843 
1,051,325 
1,275,470 
1,354,198 

1,769,655 
1,779,941 
1,795,414 



11.8 
12.1 
12.1 

12.5 
13.1 
15.4 
16.9 
17.3 

17.6 
16.9 
17.4 
18.1 
18.6 



19 
19 



20.0 



Carloads 

116,364 
131,550 
104,007 

66,081 
61,348 
78,621 
64,464 
92,222 

112,495 

109,490 

74,098 

75,079 

66,999 

73,162 
88,532 
91,603 



Tons 

1,117,672 
1,252,741 
1,024,977 



668,846 
685,809 
972,907 
804,844 
.115,937 



1,356,458 
1,353,384 
978,364 
1,087,942 
1,025,061 

1,195,793 
1,446,070 
1,547,364 



Tons Per 
Car 

9.6 
9.5 
9.9 

10.1 
11.2 
12.4 
12.5 
12.1 

12.1 
12.4 
13.2 
14.5 
15.3 



16 
16 
16, 



Source: Interstate Commerce Commission, Freight Commodity Statistics. 



States, and in the Southwestern and Southern re- 
gions, since 1928. 

Of the 227,400 cars of cotton originated in 1942 
on all Class I railroads, 91,000 originated in the 
Southwestern Region and 89,000 in the Southern 
Region. The two regions together thus originated 
nearly 80 per cent of all the cotton traffic of Class 
I carriers in that year, and they received about 
70 per cent of the total cotton revenue. 

Southwestern Region 

From a revenue standpoint cotton traffic is the 
most important item of all agricultural traffic to 
the Southwestern Region railroads. In 10 of the 
15 years 1928-42 their revenue from cotton was 
greater than that from any other single agricul- 
tural product. In the same period cotton revenue 
in most years closely approximated that from all 
animals and products, and in several years it was 
greater than the revenue from all animals and 
products. 

In the 15-year period 1928-42 cotton tonnage 
in Southwestern Region averaged 10 per cent and 
its revenue 15 per cent of that of all agricultural 
products. 

As previously stated 1 , the railroads in South- 



See page 48. 



000 tons in 1933, although the crop was 16,600,- 
000 bales in 1931 and only 12,700,000 bales in both 
1932 and 1933. In 1939 the cotton crop was 5,000,- 
000 bales less than in 1931, but railroads in South- 
western Region originated 144,000 tons more cot- 
ton than in 1931. The increase in cotton tonnage 
was accomplished in 1932 and 1933 even though 
all-agricultural-products tonnage had fallen ma- 
terially below 1931. Doubtless this increase is at- 
tributable at least in part to the establishment of 
carload rates. In considering these comparisons of 
crop production and railroad tonnage, it should be 
kept in mind that most cotton is counted in rail- 
road tonnage more than once between its first and 
its final movement by rail, and that fluctuations in 
the amount of such duplication may affect tonnage 
comparisons to some extent. 

The establishment of carload rates on cotton 
also has tended to conserve car supply and has in- 
creased average revenue per car. For instance, the 
average loading of cotton per car in the South- 
western Region was 12.1 tons for the 4-year pe- 
riod 1928-31. Since then it has steadily increased, 
reaching 19.6 tons per car in 1942. Changes made 
in statistical methods of reporting shipments of 
less than 10,000 pounds by railroads handling 
large amounts of cotton may have affected this 



52 



comparison to some extent. Although the rates 
have been materially reduced, the average revenue 
per car from cotton in this region increased from 
$74.78 in 1928 and $65.40 in 1931 to $88.49 in 
1942. 

As shown in Table XXXII, the Southwestern 
carriers originated nearly as much cotton in 1942 
as they did in 1928, but used almost 70,000 fewer 
cars. As indicated in Table XXXI, cotton revenue 
in the Southwest decreased from $20,352,000 in 
1928 to $12,681,000 in 1942, chiefly as the result 
of the sharp decrease in average revenue per ton 
shown in the same table. 

Southern Region 

While the Southwestern Region originates 
more cotton than the Southern Region, cotton 
revenue has been greater in the Southern Region 
than in the Southwestern Region since 1934. This 



when it was exceeded by the revenue from oranges 
and grapefruit. Total cotton revenue in the South- 
ern Region in 1942 was $16,356,000 as compared 
with $12,770,000 in 1928. 

In the 15-year period 1928-42, cotton tonnage 
and revenue averaged more than 11 per cent of 
all agricultural products, and revenue from cotton 
traffic in 1942 represented 15 per cent of all prod- 
ucts of agriculture and 2 per cent of all carload 
traffic in this region. 

The average loading per car of cotton originated 
in the Southern Region increased from 9.6 tons in 
1928 to 16.3 tons in 1942. 

Railway Tonnage Compared with Production 

Table XXXIII shows, by years, from 1928 to 
1941, the production and railway tonnage of cot- 
ton, with ratio and index figures, and cotton prices 
received by farmers. 



Year 

1928 
1929 
1930 

1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 

1936 
1937 
1938 
1939 
1940 

1941 



TABLE XXXIII 

Cotton 

Production, Railway Tons Handled, Ratio of Tons Handled to Production, and 
Average Season Prices Received by Farmers 







Ratio of Railroa 






Tons to Tons 


Production 




of Adjusted 


Adjusted 


Railroad 


Production 


Tons (0 


Tons C 1 ) 


(Per cent) 


3,648 


3,483 


95.5 


3,947 


3,514 


89.0 


3,612 


2,655 


73.5 


3,732 


2,076 


55.6 


3,576 


2,522 


70.5 


3,513 


3,184 


90.6 


2,688 


2,272 


84.5 


2,618 


2,619 


100.1 


2,998 


3,330 


111.1 


4,296 


3,464 


80.6 


3,562 


2,600 


73.0 


2,807 


2,854 


101.7 


2,715 


2,856 


105.2 



3,207 



3,864 



120.5 



Indices of 

Adjusted 

Production 

(1928 = 100) 

100.0 

108.2 

99.0 

102.3 
98.0 
96.3 
73.7 
71.8 

82.2 
117.8 
97.6 
76.9 
74.4 

87.9 



Indices of 

Railroad 

Tons 

(1928 = 100) 

100.0 

100.9 

76.2 

59.6 

72.4 
91.4 
65.2 
75.2 

95.6 
99.5 

74.7 
81.9 
82.0 

110.9 



Average Season 

Cotton Price 

Received by 

Farmers — Cts. 

18.0 

16.4 

9.5 

5.7 

6.5 

9.7 
12.4 
11.1 

12.3 
8.4 
8.6 
9.1 
9.9 

16.8 



(') 000 omitted. 

Sources: Interstate Commerce Commission, Bureau of Transport Economics and Statistics, "Fluctuations 
in Railway Freight Traffic Compared with Production," Class I Steam Railways, Statement No. 3951, pages 
36, 42, 48, 54, and 61; Statement No. 4130, page 37; Statement No. 4257, page 37. Production is based upon 
ginnings as reported by the Bureau of the Census, adjusted to take account of imports and changes m stocks on 
hand. Prices from Table XXV, page 42. 



is due largely to the fact that considerably more 
cotton terminates in the Southern than in the 
Southwestern region. In the 9-year period 1934- 
42 cotton revenue in the Southern Region has 
been greater than that of any other agricultural 
product, except in the years 1937, 1938, and 1939 



In 1928, railroad tons of cotton terminated 
closely approximated adjusted 1 tons of production, 
the former amounting to 95.5 per cent of the lat- 
ter. There was practically no haulage of cotton 
by truck in 1928, and not much of the total was 



Adjusted for imports and changes in stocks on hand. 



53 



hauled by water. With the advent of severe truck 
competition in 1930 and 1931, railroad tonnage 
fell off substantially. The ratio of railroad tons 
to production was 73.5 per cent in 1930, and 55.6 
per cent in 1931. Production was nearly the same 
in those years as in 1928. In other words, produc- 
tion was 84,000 tons greater in 1931 than in 1928, 
but railroad tonnage had decreased by 1,407,000 
tons. 

With reduced rates on cotton, railroad tons in- 
creased slightly in 1932 and materially in 1933. 
As previously shown, the reduced rates on cotton 
did not become effective until the latter part of 
1932; thus the effects of these reductions were 
not fully realized until 1933. Railroad tons in 
1933 amounted to 3,184,000 tons, only 300,000 tons 
less than in 1928, and a gain of 1,100,000 tons 
over 1931. In the same year the ratio increased to 
90.6 per cent. 

In 1934 production was curtailed and repre- 
sented but 74 per cent of 1928 production, and 
the ratio fell to 84.5 per cent. This was probably 
attributable to reduced consumption due to the im- 
position of the processing tax under the Bankhead 
Act 1 . 

In 1935 the ratio was 100.1 per cent, while in 
1936 it rose to 111.1 per cent. Rising cotton con- 
sumption in the United States took considerable 
cotton out of storage, accounting for the greater 
amount transported than produced. The reverse 
occured in 1937, when a record crop was produced. 
However, the ratio was 80.6 per cent and the total 
railroad tons were virtually as great as in 1928. 
With the general business recession in 1938, the 
ratio fell to 73.0 per cent. During the two years 
1937-38 when the ratio of rail shipments to pro- 
duction was lower than it had been since 1932, 
a total of slightly more than 10,000,000 bales of 
cotton was put under government loan and there- 
fore did not move in trade channels 2 . 

War activity commenced in 1939, and railroads 



1 For summary of this Act, see Appendix, page 95. 

2 Agricultural Statistics, 1942, U. S. D. A., page 730. 



tons rose, while production remained about the 
same as the average for the three years 1934-36. 
Hence, the ratio again exceeded 100 per cent. The 
war has greatly stimulated the movement of cot- 
ton, especially by rail. The ratio in 1941 was great- 
er than at any time since 1928, having reached 
120.5 per cent, and railroad tons of cotton were 
also greater in 1941 than in any year since 1928. 

Chart F shows graphically the relationship be- 
tween the ratio of railroad tons to production and 
the prices received by farmers for cotton, the 
figures being taken from Table XXXIII. The cor- 
respondence of trends between the two is inter- 
esting and may have implications of great sig- 
nificance. For example, the chart shows that al- 
most without exception the proportion of total 
production which moves by rail is higher when 
market prices rise and vice-versa. Putting it an- 
other way, the more margin the market price af- 
fords for a profit in handling the cotton the less 
tendency there is to divert the cotton from the 
railroads. 

In 1928, when the farm price of cotton 1 aver- 
aged 18 cents per pound, 96 per cent of the ton- 
nage moved by rail. When the cotton price fell 
to 9.5 cents and 5.7 cents per pound in 1930 and 
1931, respectively, the ratio of railroad tons to 
adjusted production fell to 74 per cent and 56 
per cent, respectively. When the price increased 
slightly in 1932 the railroad ratio also increased 
and as the price increased further in 1933 to 9.7 
cents per pound the ratio of railroad tons in- 
creased to 91 per cent. Again in 1937 and 1938 
when the price of cotton fell off the ratio of rail- 
road tons likewise declined. As the price of cotton 
to the farmer increased in 1939, 1940 and 1941 
the ratio of railroad tons to tons of adjusted cot- 
ton production correspondingly increased. 

The suggestion to be derived is that activities 
which help to promote higher market prices for 
cotton and greater profitability of cotton produc- 
tion and handling may be a substitute for rate 
reductions in holding cotton to the rails. 



1 The average season cotton price received by farmers. 



54 



Chart F 
RATIO OF RAILROAD TONS TO ADJUSTED PRODUCTION OF COTTON 

AND 
AVERAGE SEASON PRICES RECEIVED BY FARMERS FOR COTTON 



120 

115 

110 

105 

100 

95 

90 

85 

80 

75 

p* 70 

z 

LU 

O 65 

of 
in 
S^ 60 

O 



< 

DC 



55 

50 

45 
40 

35 
30 
25 
20 
15 
10 
5 




























/ 


























I 
/ 
t 
















; 


l 








1 
1 
















/ 

/ 
/ 


\ 

\ 








1 
1 

I 
















/ 
/ 


\ 

\ 




1 


^. 




\ 












) 
1 




\ 
\ 




1 






• \ ' ' 

\ 
\ 








1 




t 

1 
/ 




\ 
\ 




1 
1 






e- V 


V 

\ 






/ 
/ 


\ 
\ 


t 
1 
/ 




\ 
\ 




I 
1 








\ 
\ 

1 \ 






/ 

/ 








\ 


\ 
\ 


1 
1 




1 




| T- 

\ \ 
\ \ 






/ 
/ 










\ 

\ 


1 
1 




/ 




\ N 


\ 


/ 


/ 

e Ratio 


of railro 


ad tons 


to tons 


of adju 


> 
sted pre 


duction 




/ 






\ 

\ 
v 


/ 

/ 

/ 






/ 






\ 

\ 
\ 


/ 

/ 


















/ 






■V- 

\ 


f 


















/ 


























/ 




























































A- Av 


erage s« 


ason co 


ton pric 


1 i 

e received by farmers 






































































































Sou 


rce: Tab 


le XXXI 


1 

















































































17 
16 

15 
14 
13 
12 
II 
10 
9 

8 
7 
6 
5 
4 
3 
2 
I 



o 



-o 
m 
71 

-o 

o 

c 

Z 

o 
O 

m 

Z 
—l 



55 




^ 



Chapter V 
Consumption 



World Consumption 

Table XXXIV shows world consumption of cot- 
ton from 1914 to 1941, divided between Ameri- 
can cotton and foreign cotton. No distinction is 
here made as to where the cotton is consumed ; 
that is, the figures under American-grown include 
both domestic and foreign consumption of Ameri- 
can cotton. 



has been greater than that of any prior consecu- 
tive 5 years. 

American cotton for many years represented 
more than one-half of all cottons consumed in the 
world. Table XXXIV shows that approximately 
60 per cent of all cotton consumed in world mills 
from 1914 through 1928 was American. The most 
significant change in the use of American cotton 







TABLE XXXIV 








World Mill Consumption of Cotton 










(000 Omitted) 

"R-ilnr- /i\ 










JDcilCS ^ ) 






Year 


American 
Grown 


Foreign 
Grown 


World 


American Per cent 
of World 


1914 
1915 


13,249 
13,039 


7,999 
8,939 


21,248 
21,978 


62 
59 


1916 
1917 
1918 
1919 
1920 


12,561 
10,871 
9,909 
11,898 
10,268 


8,548 
7,645 
6,796 
7,402 
6,883 


21,109 
18,516 
16,705 
19,300 
17,151 


60 
59 
59 
62 
60 


1921 
1922 
1923 
1924 
1925 


12,209 
12,449 
10,917 
13,311 
14,010 


7,569 
8,888 
9,110 
9,423 
10,158 


19,778 
21,337 
20,027 
22,734 
24,168 


62 
58 
55 
59 

58 


1926 
1927 
1928 


15,748 
15,576 
15,226 


9,931 

9,866 

10,552 


25,679 
25,442 
25,778 


61 
61 
59 


Total 1914-28 


191,241 


129,709 


320,950 


60 


1929 
1930 


13,021 
11,056 


11,854 
11,376 


24,875 
22,432 


52 
49 


1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 


12,528 
14,385 
13,780 
11,206 
12,503 


10,361 
10,266 
11,822 
14,274 
15,026 


22,889 
24,651 
25,602 
25,480 
27,529 


55 
58 
54 
44 
45 


1936 
1937 
1938 
1939 
1940 


13,093 
10,795 
11,249 
12,876 
11,867 


17,541 
16,778 
17,258 
15,610 
14,675 


30,638 
27,573 
28,507 
28,486 
26,542 


43 
39 
40 
45 
45 


1941 


12,210 


13,362 


25,572 


48 


Total 1929-41 


160,569 


180,203 


340,776 


47 



0) American cotton in running bales, counting round bales as half bales; Foreign 
cotton in 478-pound net bales. 

Source: U. S. Dept. of Agriculture, Agricultural Statistics, 1936, Table 105; 1942, 
Table 146; U. S. Dept. of Commerce, Cotton Production and Distribution Bulletin 180, 
Table 13; New York Cotton Exchange Yearbook, 1942. 



World cotton consumption has been on the in- 
crease since 1914 with but few exceptions. The 
peak world consumption of 30,638,000 bales was 
reached in 1936. There has been a slight down- 
ward trend since then, but the average consump- 
tion of 27,336,000 bales for the 5 years 1937-41 



in world mills was from the 1928 to the 1929 sea- 
son, when there was a reduction of 2,205,000 bales 
of American cotton and an increase of 1,302,000 
bales of foreign cotton. 

This tremendous shift from American to for- 
eign cotton in world mills was caused largely by 



58 



loans on American cotton at above-market prices 
in 1929 by our Federal Farm Board 1 . This drove 
foreign consumers of American cotton to the use 
of foreign cotton. An interesting comparison is 
shown by consumption in 1936 and in 1928. Even 
though world consumption of all cotton was great- 
er in 1936 by approximately 5,000,000 bales over 
1928, there were 2,133,000 fewer bales of Ameri- 
can cotton and 6,989,000 more bales of foreign 
cotton consumed in world mills in 1936 than in 
1928. It is also significant that while American 
cotton constituted 60 per cent of world consump- 
tion during the 15 years 1914-28, it was but 47 
per cent during the 13 years 1929-41. 



average annual consumption of about 6,250,000 
bales during the 15 years 1922-36, slightly more 
than 40 per cent was used for clothing, almost 
40 per cent for industrial purposes and about 20 
per cent for household purposes. 

The latest available information indicates that 
there has been very little change from these aver- 
ages. Table XXXV shows the uses of cotton in the 
United States for the years 1937 and 1939 and 
the percentage relationship of each use to total 
consumption. 

Domestic Consumption 

The consumption of American and foreign cot- 
ton by United States mills, by years, from 1914 



TABLE XXXV 
Cotton Consumption in the United States According to Use 

Bales (!) (000 omitted) 



Uses 


1937 




1939 




L 

1937 


ei ceii tiigc 


1939 




All apparel 


2,602 




2,732 




38.7 




37.8 




Household 


1,500 




1,808 




22.3 




25.1 




Industrial 


2,626 




2,677 




39.0 




37.1 




Auto Tires 




634 




633 




9.4 




8.8 


Bags 




477 




459 




7.1 




6.4 


Cordage 




325 




357 




4.8 




4.9 


Mixtures (with other fibers) 




116 




131 




1.7 




1.8 


Other 




1,074 




1,097 




16.0 




15.2 



6,728 



7,217 



100.0 



100.0 



TOTAL 
0) Of 478 pounds net weight. 
Source: "Cotton Counts Its Customers", Bureau of Business Research, University of Mississippi, and Division of Research, 



National Cotton Council of America. 

The total world consumption of cotton was sub- 
stantially the same in 1941 as in 1928, yet 3,016,- 
000 fewer bales of American and 2,810,000 more 
bales of foreign cotton were consumed than in 
1928. 

The obvious conclusion is that foreign mills 
have been turning heavily to the use of foreign 
in place of American cotton. This trend may be 
difficult to arrest, but much of the postwar fu- 
ture of cotton depends upon what can be done 
along this line. 

Chart G graphically shows the trends, by years, 
from 1914 to 1941, in world consumption of cot- 
ton; separated also between cotton of United 
States and of foreign growth. 

Uses of Cotton 

The best information available on the uses of 
cotton in the United States indicates that, of our 



1 For Summary of this Board's activities in cotton, see 
Appendix, page 94. 



to 1942, is shown in Table XXXVI. In Table 
XXXVII the total United States consumption, by 
years from 1909 to 1943, is broken down by states. 

Chart H shows graphically the trends of Ameri- 
can cotton production, consumption, and exports, 
by years, from 1909 to 1942, inclusive. 

Cotton consumption in the United States was 
slightly above 6,000,000 bales for the 5-year pe- 
riod 1915-19, but fell below 5,000,000 bales dur- 
ing the 1920 postwar readjustment period. After 
1920 the trend in consumption was upward 
through 1928. Then it declined with the general 
depression, dropping to 4,866,000 bales in 1931, 
the smallest amount consumed by our mills since 
before World War I. There was a rise in con- 
sumption of 1,270,000 bales in 1932 over 1931. 

The upward trend, however, was rather abrupt- 
ly halted in 1933 by the effects of the processing 
tax of 4.2 cents per pound. (See discussion of this 
tax under next heading) . The processing tax was 



59 





38 




37 




36 




35 




34 




33 




32 




31 




30 




29 




28 




27 


e 


26 


-£ 


25 


CO 

■<»■ 


24 


o 


23 
22 


c 
.? 

o 


21 
20 


(A 


19 



18 
17 
16 



15 
14 
13 
12 
II 
10 
9 

8 

7 
6 
5 

4 
3 





























■+ a 










































WORLD MILL CONSUMPTION OF COTTON 
1914- 1941 










































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































^ 


Total 
Cotton 
































































































































































































































































































































































1 

/ 


s. 


,^ 


\ 


















































/ 
/ 


\ 


S 


\ 
\ 






























< 


,^^ 


^^ 
















1 
1 






\ 


\ 
\ 




























/ 






\ 






/' 


\ t 


I 


s 










\ 


\ 




____ 




















i 


^ u 


nl+pr 




\ 






/ 


V 


1 

\J_ 














\ 

> 






V 


V 










^ 


\ 


1 




States 




\ 




/ 




x 


/ 


y 


\ 




/ 


\ 










\ 




/ 


\ 


/ 




\ 


1 










/ 


A 


/ 






^ 


/ 




\ 




/ 














\ 


/ 


\ 


/ 














• 


/ 




\ 
\ 


^- 


/ 






































-B »- 






V ^v 


/v 


s Foreign 


























/ 
/ 


"-> 


y 
\ 










/ 
/ 














































\ 




^ 
• 


\ 


/ 
/ 


r 
















































v 


s 


s 


/ 










































































































































Source: Table XXXIV 
















































































































































































^- m *© r-* oo o o — <n m -*t- m o r^ooo o — c^ ro^-in *o r*. co 
— — — — — — <ni C4CSCN cm c*j o-j cmcnics o m m mmco co mm 

o* o* o*o* o* o* o* 0* o* o- o* o o* o o* o* o o o o o o O* O"* O- 



60 



also in effect throughout the 1934 and 1935 sea- 
sons and held down consumption in 1934. There 
was a general expansion in 1935 in the use of all 
textile fibers, and cotton consumption increased 
to well above 6,000,00 bales. With the repeal of 
the Bankhead Act 1 and the consequent removal 
of the processing tax, consumption attained a new 
high of almost 8,000,000 bales in 1936, but de- 
clined once more in 1937 and 1938 in keeping with 
general business activity. The beginning of the 



In the 29-year period 1914-42, American-grown 
cotton was 97 per cent of all cotton consumed in 
the United States. 

Cotton Processing Tax 

The Agricultural Adjustment Act 1 , 1933, as- 
sessed a processing tax on cotton, the purpose of 
which was to defray the cost of acreage reduction. 
This tax was applied upon the first domestic 
processing, other than ginning, of cotton at the 





TABLE 


XXXVI 






American Mill Consumption of Cotton 






Bales (i) (000 omitted) 
American Foreign 


Total All 
Growths 


American Per cent 
of all Growths 


5,375 
6,081 




222 
317 


5,597 
6,398 


96 
95 


6,470 
6,382 
5,590 
6,003 
4,677 




319 
184 
176 
417 
216 


6,789 
6,566 
5,766 
6,420 
4,893 


95 
97 
97 
94 
96 


5,613 
6,322 
5,353 
5,917 
6,176 




297 
344 
328 
276 
280 


5,910 
6,666 
5,681 
6,193 
6,456 


95 
95 
94 
96 
96 


6,880 
6,535 
6,778 
5,803 
5,084 




310 
299 
313 
303 

179 


7,190 
6,834 
7,091 
6,106 
5,263 


96 
96 
96 
95 
97 


4,744 
6,004 
5,553 
5,241 
6,219 




122 
133 
147 
120 
132 


4,866 
6,137 
5,700 
5,361 
6,351 


98 
98 
97 
98 
98 


7,767 
5,615 
6,736 
7,655 
9,576 




182 
132 
122 
119 
146 


7,950 

5,748 
6,858 
7,784 
9,722 


98 
98 
98 
98 
99 


10,973 
10,930 




197 

170 


11,170 
11,100 


98 
98 



Year 

1914 
1915 

1916 
1917 
1918 
1919 
1920 

1921 
1922 

1923 ( 
1924 
1925 

1926 
1927 
1928 
1929 
1930 

1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 

1936 
1937 
1938 
1939 
1940 

1941 
1942 

Average 6,485 224 6,709 97 

0) American Cotton in running bales, counting round bales as half bales; Foreign cotton in 478 pound net bales. 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Statistics, 1936, Table 105 and 1942, Table 146; U. S. Dept. of Commerce, 
'Cotton Production and Distribution," Bulletin 180, Table 13; New York Cotton Exchange Yearbook, 1942. 



present war caused cotton consumption in the 
United States to start a tremendous upward 
spiral in 1939, reaching an all-time peak of 11,- 
170,000 bales in 1941. High prices and labor 
shortage caused a reduction in consumption of 
more than 1,000,000 bales in 1943 under both 
1941 and 1942. 



rate of 4.2 cents per pound net weight, or $20.08 
per bale of 478 pounds net weight. It affected only 
domestically consumed cotton and was abated or 
refunded on exported products. The tax was 
operative during 1933 under the Agricultural Ad- 
justment Act and in 1934 and 1935 under the 
Bankhead Act. 



1 For summary of this Act, see Appendix, page 95. 



1 For summary of this Act, see Appendix, page 94. 



61 



TABLE XXXVII 

Cotton Consumed by Mills, in the United States and by States 

In Running Bales, Round Bales Counted as Half Bales, 
and Foreign Cotton in 500-Pound (Gross) Bales 



Year (' ) Be 
ginning 
Aug. 1 


United 




( 


Califor- 


Connec- 










Massachu- 


Missis- 


New Hamp- 


States 


Alabama 




nia 


ticut 


Georgia 


Illinois 


Indiana 


Maine 


setts 


sippi 


shire 


1909 


4,621,742 


236,188 




14,803 


136,870 


496,951 


17,451 


21,612 


154,841 


1,228,813 


29,978 


265,501 


1910 


4,498,417 


247,179 




13,375 


128,991 


488,738 


16,598 


14,435 


151,595 


1,144,345 


25,719 


259,458 


1911 


5,129,346 


267,189 




18,780 


142,745 


564,426 


27,831 


21,795 


166,550 


1,264,017 


31,151 


295,095 


1912 


5,483,321 


299,924 




21,713 


145,477 


648,131 


37,091 


23,228 


175,271 


1,332,912 


33,292 


305,867 


1913 


5,577,408 


287,335 




( 2 ) 


134,839 


632,332 


10,938 


16,941 


181,262 


1,347,778 


30,855 


300,881 


1914 


5,597,362 


297,277 




( 2 ) 


132,701 


659,853 


11,010 


18,969 


176,088 


1,282,937 


32,386 


297,040 


1915 


6,397,613 


346,233 




( 2 ) 


144,582 


797,789 


13,007 


18,509 


193,534 


1,462,880 


35,542 


294,666 


1916 


6,788,505 


390,956 




( 2 ) 


145,524 


907,015 


14,226 


17,940 


187,150 


1,459,209 


38,647 


317,881 


1917 


6,566,489 


374,792 




( 2 ) 


138,192 


854.078 


12,718 


17,138 


185,418 


1.459,291 


36,640 


310,478 


1918 


5,765,936 


326,773 




( 2 ) 


124,026 


702,676 


11,643 


14,525 


157,414 


1,324,815 


32,945 


267,501 


1919 


6,419,734 


367,468 




( 2 ) 


135,939 


800,901 


13,006 


14,472 


194,431 


1,454,325 


36,425 


294,289 


1920 


4 , 892 , 672 


309,646 




( 2 ) 


95,407 


614,079 


10,754 


14,212 


153,165 


922,482 


31,208 


220,241 


1921 


5,909,820 


377,548 




( 2 ) 


115,631 


781,870 


12,418 


15,936 


162,142 


1,140,459 


40,463 


175,983 


1922 


6,666,092 


414,880 




32 , 483 


124,500 


974,662 


12,451 


15,683 


182,184 


1,231,300 


46,117 


235,377 


1923 


5,680,554 


392,705 




32,278 


96,909 


864,328 


13,165 


15,711 


148,836 


869,695 


34,751 


191,816 


1924 


6 193,417 


430,051 




29,442 


95,963 


966,324 


11,783 


15,157 


146,379 


950,942 


32,201 


205,326 


1925 


6,455,852 


494,283 




31,876 


92,624 


1,012,980 


11,326 


17,419 


136,318 


945,790 


33,402 


224,981 


1926 


7,189,585 


570,409 




36,789 


104,451 


1,152,855 


12,390 


19,444 


135,994 


972,820 


36,450 


231,844 


1927 


6 834,063 


552,020 




33,189 


105,923 


1,168,431 


12,412 


17,624 


122,070 


789,975 


41,627 


206,936 


1928 


7,091,065 


617,249 




34 , 708 


110,450 


1,269,578 


11,443 


16,888 


122,329 


779,166 


41,331 


206,281 


1929 


6 105 840 


583,439 




30,458 


90,341 


1,089,661 


10,138 


15,193 


113,965 


627,483 


36,204 


169,482 


1930 


5,262,974 


519,714 




24,234 


74 , 542 


929 , 901 


9,969 


13,756 


105,413 


490,744 


34,365 


160,506 


1931 


4 866,016 


532,250 




20,867 


52 . 474 


874,383 


9,922 


11,881 


87,445 


340,372 


35,357 


122,190 


1932 


6,137,395 


660,987 




15,792 


58,321 


1,104,795 


12,935 


11,451 


136,984 


420,383 


46,831 


158,071 


1933 


5,700,253 


583,756 




20,911 


58,915 


1,059,665 


10,738 


15,490 


133,669 


515,673 


41,206 


168,660 


1934 


5 360,867 


555,511 




26,642 


57,968 


956,310 


20,864 


21,783 


93,739 


440,923 


38,972 


133,341 


1935 


6,351,160 


689,378 




26,338 


59 , 520 


1,225,115 


12,729 


19,282 


119,984 


449,850 


43,092 


105,083 


1936 


7,950,079 


855,975 




25,981 


77,279 


1 , 562 , 067 


23 , 832 


21,977 


169,020 


539,025 


52 , 821 


156,633 


1937 


5,747,978 


587,613 




10,192 


46,434 


1,080,193 


18,166 


13,421 


119,964 


329,408 


38,265 


118,164 


1938 


6,858,426 


727,228 




12,567 


54,244 


1,347,511 


18,539 


12,874 


147,081 


409,815 


39 , 640 


130,425 


1939 


7,783,774 


867,579 




15,590 


67,104 


1,565,066 


22 , 769 


14,180 


150,245 


470,971 


45,058 


111,172 


1940 


9,721,703 


1,126,724 




18,268 


84,513 


1,917,807 


26,202 


( 2 ) 


185,560 


610,316 


86,017 


127,220 


1941 


11,170,106 


1,298,675 




24,781 


93,985 


2,225,454 


29 , 852 


( 2 ) 


215,445 


691,524 


57 , 583 


159,175 


1942 


11 100,082 


1,300,929 




27,129 


77,936 


2,296,177 


32,010 


( 2 ) 


182,466 


625,416 


52,400 


145,975 


1943 


9,943,370 


1,176,268 




( 2 ) 


61 , 523 


2,044,974 


( 2 ) 


( 2 ) 


153,473 


512,833 


( 2 ) 


124,950 


Year (' ) B« 
ginning 
Aug. 1 


New 
Jersey 


New York 


North 
Carolina 


Pennsyl- 
vania 


Rhode 
Island 


South 
Carolina 


Tennessee 


Texas 


Vermont 


Virginia 


All Other 

States 


1909 


52 853 


199,787 




658,498 


66,885 


219,920 


627,708 


70,229 


39,052 


10,441 


70 , 689 


179,883 


1910 


53 , 609 


182,068 




696,987 


67,297 


218,034 


618,696 


70,147 


41,310 


8,669 


77,702 


180,024 


1911 


62 , 433 


205,191 




824,476 


69,887 


229,365 


731,318 


73,441 


51,820 


10,588 


86,177 


227,300 


1912 


64,912 


227,813 




876,359 


76,579 


239,060 


775,851 


81,790 


58,354 


12,226 


95,064 


250,418 


1913 


57,380 


211,458 




906,177 


48,727 


241,443 


794,678 


79,590 


47,162 


12,994 


85,566 


149,072 


1914 


57 004 


205,938 




910,154 


44,891 


248,242 


811,564 


83,330 


50,813 


12,390 


97,714 


167,061 


1915 


62,664 


238,748 


1 


067,288 


49,203 


279,233 


914,532 


98,707 


59,181 


13,823 


112,396 


195,088 


1916 


54,111 


238,081 


1 


209,670 


53,156 


291,063 


962,566 


108,782 


63,235 


13,545 


110,964 


204,784 


1917 


49,518 


240,310 


1 


183,275 


46,906 


296,913 


888,218 


104,842 


63,978 


12,228 


97,457 


194,099 


1918 


38,007 


209,048 


1 


035,717 


37,180 


279,297 


764,794 


92,052 


60,995 


11,978 


94,264 


180,286 


1919 


37 075 


233,729 


1 


149,241 


41,739 


305,240 


843,924 


108,373 


64 , 333 


12,902 


112,747 


199,175 


1920 


31,364 


130,793 




926,384 


24,429 


212,199 


771,560 


74,689 


62,617 


10,103 


105,352 


171,988 


1921 


38,265 


197,930 


1 


198,163 


29,747 


215,996 


918,725 


107,731 


76,606 


12,470 


116,530 


175,107 


1922 


41,866 


201,270 


1 


326,174 


30,876 


264,132 


1,035,557 


123,052 


83,221 


12,087 


121,272 


189,431 


1923 


39,088 


144,017 


1 


199,859 


30,892 


217,971 


947,964 


120,053 


79,627 


9,550 


105,775 


157,842 


1924 


62 , 132 


164,610 


1 


334,794 


30,687 


230,035 


1,029,797 


115,202 


93 , 494 


10,129 


110,883 


128,086 


1925 


47,826 


163,905 


1 


394,124 


30,054 


220,332 


1,078,146 


130,619 


118,071 


7,952 


121,243 


142,581 


1926 


35,772 


162,477 


1 


.639,726 


26,508 


219,227 


1,245,482 


150,914 


139,273 


10,436 


129,783 


156,541 


1927 


35,041 


140,326 


1 


583,829 


23,977 


203,621 


1,228,642 


158,387 


130,042 


9,906 


120,024 


150,061 


1928 


32,176 


127,602 


1 


631,443 


18,276 


218,980 


1,301,496 


176,092 


121,051 


10,245 


106,424 


137,857 


1929 


30 , 852 


101,390 


1 


420 , 735 


17,078 


132,749 


1,124,247 


169,407 


100,602 


8,710 


120,449 


113,257 


1930 


26,375 


83 , 598 


1 


252,144 


15,060 


97,836 


1,015,593 


150,443 


68,755 


7,700 


95,927 


86,399 


1931 


28,237 


69,685 


1 


183,300 


11,322 


69,321 


1,017,531 


140,120 


60,670 


5,660 


115,479 


77 , 550 


1932 


20 , 020 


83,252 


1 


471,672 


12,687 


101,024 


1,323,986 


153,206 


85,934 


9,261 


144,547 


105,256 


1933 


24,519 


73,685 


1 


,334,653 


13,702 


100,969 


1,101,088 


122,303 


87,070 


7,512 


137,403 


88,666 


1934 


21,856 


69,972 


1 


,249,685 


11,879 


83 , 600 


1,055,838 


129,786 


67 , 564 


8,620 


144,738 


171,276 


1935 


16,873 


86,310 


1 


,645,028 


16,122 


88,721 


1,255,089 


154,297 


80 , 564 


8,415 


154,676 


94 , 774 


1936 


22,336 


116,064 


2 


,021,101 


21,160 


120,417 


1,510,963 


190,779 


130,959 


10,509 


174,048 


147,133 


1937 


17,766 


65 , 640 


1 


,478,230 


10,591 


86,523 


1,195,640 


152,347 


118,933 


7,070 


146,415 


107,003 


1938 


19,373 


84,088 


1 


,789,458 


13,048 


108,309 


1,372,009 


172,777 


125,064 


9,525 


139,323 


125,528 


1939 


21 741 


95,123 


2 


,039,759 


17,580 


111,393 


1,535,886 


190,652 


145,422 


7,428 


148,936 


140,132 


1940 


26,526 


110,118 


2 


,413,319 


17,665 


135,751 


1,817,741 


251,693 


245,188 


( 2 ) 


195,938 


325,137 


1941 


32,917 


133,657 


2 


,832,380 


24,621 


148,440 


2,150,051 


273,475 


254,157 


( 2 ) 


252,344 


271 , 590 


1942 


32,705 


119,201 


2 


,853,915 


21,971 


120,685 


2,190,088 


263,212 


267,452 


( 2 ) 


260,081 


230,334 


1943 


( 2 ) 


102,778 


2 


,659,997 


( 2 ) 


95,048 


2,039,106 


221,955 


( 2 ) 


( 2 ) 


231,071 


519,384 



) Statistics relating to years prior to 1914 are for 12 months beginning September 1. Cotton consumption statistics are usually shown for year ending 
July 31. However, in order that consumption and production statistics correlate, all consumption figures have been moved back a year, thus the figures are for 
year beginning August 1. 

( 2 ) Included in "All Other States". 

Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census, Cotton Production and Distribution Bulletins 180, 175, 173, 169, 164, 156, 147, 137, and 115. 

62 



CO 

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o 

Q- 

X 

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Q 
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< 

z 

o 

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Sources: 

Production and Exports, Table XLIII 

Consumption, Table XXXVII 




























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Production in 500-pound bales. 
Exports in 500-pound bales. 
Consumption in running bales. 


























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1942 

1941 

1940 

1939 

1938 

1937 

1936 

1935 

1934 

1933 

1932 

1931 

1930 

1929 

1928 

1927 

1926 

1925 

1924 

1923 

1922 

1921 

1920 

19(9 

1918 

1917 

1916 

1915 

1914 

1913 

1912 

1911 

1910 

1909 



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63 



Foreign Cotton. 

As indicated in Table XXXVI, consumption of 
foreign cotton in the United States for the 29- 
year period 1914-42, has averaged but 3 per cent 
of our total consumption. The largest amount of 
foreign cotton used in any of these years was in 
1919, when we consumed 417,000 bales. Subse- 
quently the use of foreign cottons in the United 
States gradually decreased until in 1934 we con- 
sumed but 120,000 bales of foreign cotton, or 2 
per cent of our total consumption. Since 1934 
consumption of foreign cotton in the United Sttaes 
has increased, and 197,000 bales were consumed 
in 1941, still only 2 per cent of the total. 

In the 1910's and early 1920's Eastern and New 
England states used practically all of the foreign 
cotton consumed in the United States. Since 1923, 
however, mills in the cotton-growing states, es- 
pecially North Carolina and Georgia, have found 
more uses for this type of cotton. Of the total 
foreign cotton consumed in the United States in 
1938, the cotton-growing states consumed 47 per 
cent while the Eastern and New England states 
consumed 50 per cent. The remaining 3 per cent 
was consumed in other parts of the country. 

Consumption In New England 
and in Cotton States 

Although all our cotton is grown in southern 
areas of the country, for a long time most of it was 
consumed by mills in the North, particularly in 
the New England states. By the turn of the cen- 
tury, however, mills in the cotton-growing states 
were consuming almost as much cotton as the New 
England mills. The cotton-producing states be- 
came the major consumers by 1905, and have 
steadily increased consumption until today their 
mills use 88 per cent of the cotton consumed in the 
United States. New England mills, on the other 
hand, consume but 10 per cent. Various other ter- 
ritories account for approximately 2 per cent. 

Table XXXVIII shows, by years, from 1909 to 
1943, the total mill consumption of cotton in the 
United States according to the territory where 
used. Cotton consumed by New England mills has 
declined from 43 per cent of our total in 1909 to 
10 per cent in 1943. A similar downward trend is 
apparent for "all other" states. As other parts of 
the country have lost cotton-mill business, the cot- 
ton-growing states have gained. These states have 



increased their consumption of cotton from 48 per 
cent of the total in 1909 to 88 per cent in 1943. 

Consumption By States 

Cotton consumption in the following individual 
states is of sufficient importance to be reported by 
the United States Bureau of the Census. 



Cotton-Growing 



New England 



Other 



Alabama South Carolina Connecticut Illinois 

California Tennessee Maine Indiana 

Georgia Texas Massachusetts New Jersey 

Mississippi Virginia New HampshireNew York 

North Carolina Rhode Island Pennsylvania 

Vermont 

Table XXXVII, page 62, shows, by years, from 
1909 to 1943, cotton consumed by mills in these 
states. 

In each of the cotton-growing states, except Cal- 
ifornia, Mississippi and Tennessee, consumption 
reached its peak in 1942 after an almost continu- 
ous rise since the early 1920's. Consumption in 
California has decreased, while the peak occurred 
in 1940 and 1941, respectively, in Mississippi and 
Tennessee. 

Table XXXIX is extracted from Table XXXVII. 
It shows, by decades, from 1910 to 1940, the mill 
consumption in the cotton-growing states, with 
each state's percentage of total United States 
consumption. 

Among these states, North Carolina has showfc 
(see Table XXVII) the most marked increase in 
consumption — from 659,000 bales in 1909 to 
2,854,000 bales in 1942. Ranking next in volume 
of 1942 consumption to North Carolina are Geor- 
gia, South Carolina, and Alabama, respectively. 
These four states combined accounted for 8,641,- 
100 bales, or 77 per cent of the 1942 consumption. 

Texas is the only Southwestern state for which 
consumption statistics are available. Although 
Texas consumption does not yet approach that of 
any of the four leaders, it is steadily gaining, hav- 
ing been 263,000 bales in 1942, as contrasted with 
41,000 bales in 1910. The relative increase in 
Texas has been greater than that of Mississippi, 
Tennessee or Virginia. 

Of the western states, California alone is note- 
worthy. Its cotton consumption reached an all- 
time high of nearly 37,000 bales in 1926, and aver- 
aged 28,600 for the 10-year period 1922-31. With 
the beginning of the 1929 depression, California 
consumption decreased sharply and had dropped 
to 10,200 bales by 1937. Since that time it has 



64 



^ 



TABLE XXXVIII 
Mill Consumption of Cotton 0) in the United States, by Territories 

Bales ( 2 ) (000 Omitted) 



Year Begin- 
ning 
Aug. 1 

1909 
1910 

1911 
1912 
1913 
1914 
1915 

1916 
1917 
1918 
1919 
1920 

1921 
1922 
1923 
1924 
1925 

1926 
1927 
1928 
1929 
1930 

1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 

1936 
1937 
1938 
1939 
1940 

1941 
1942 
1943 



United 
States 

4,622 
4,498 

5,129 
5,483 
5,577 
5,597 
6,398 

6,789 
6,566 
5,766 
6,420 
4,895 

5,910 
6,666 
5,681 
6,193 
6,456 

7,190 
6,834 
7,091 
6,106 
5,263 

4,866 
6,137 
5,700 
5,361 
6,351 

7,950 
5,748 
6,858 
7,784 
9,722 

11,170 

11,100 

9,943 



Cotton-Growing States 


Bales 


Per cent 


2,234 


48 


2,249 


50 


2,636 


51 


2,862 


52 


2,925 


52 


3,027 


54 


3,528 


55 


3,888 


57 


3,697 


56 


3,199 


56 


3,583 


56 


2,997 


61 


3,730 


63 


4,248 


64 


3,858 


68 


4,220 


68 


4,500 


70 


5,194 


72 


5,114 


75 


5,392 


76 


4,749 


78 


4,148 


79 


4,033 


83 


5,087 


83 


4,550 


80 


4,306 


80 


5,336 


84 


6,626 


83 


4,881 


85 


5,810 


85 


6,647 


85 


8,289 


85 


9,526 


85 


9,640 


87 



8,739 



New England States 
Bales Per cent 



1,995 

1,882 

2,076 
2,178 
2,219 
2,149 
2,389 

2,414 
2,403 
2,165 
2,397 
1,614 

1,823 
2,050 
1,535 
1,639 
1,628 

1,675 
1,438 
1,447 
1,145 
937 

677 

884 
985 
818 
832 

1,073 
708 
859 
918 

1,147 

1,313 

1,156 

950 



All Other States 
Bales Per cent 



0) Includes both American and foreign cotton consumed. 

( 2 ) U. S. in running bales, counting round bales as half bales; foreign in 500-pound bales 

Source: Cotton Production and Distribution Bulletins, U. S. Dept. of Commerce, Eulletin 180 



43 


393 


42 


367 


41 


417 


40 


443 


40 


433 


38 


421 


37 


481 


36 


486 


37 


467 


37 


402 


37 


440 


33 


282 


31 


357 


31 


369 


27 


287 


27 


335 


25 


328 


23 


321 


21 


282 


20 


251 


19 


214 


18 


179 


14 


155 


14 


167 


17 


165 


15 


237 


13 


184 


14 


251 


12 


160 


12 


189 


12 


219 


12 


285 


12 


331 


10 


304 


10 


254 


etin 180, 


Table 16. 



United States 

Alabama 

Georgia 

Mississippi 

North Carolina 

South Carolina 

Tennessee 

Virginia 

Texas 

California 

Total (*) 



TABLE XXXIX 

Cotton Consumed by Mills in Cotton-Growing States (') 
Bales (000 Omitted) 



1910 
4,498 

247 

489 

26 

697 

619 

70 

78 

41 

13 

2,280 



1920 
4,893 

310 

614 

31 

926 

772 

75 

105 

63 

( 2 ) 
2,896 



-Consumption- 



0) States for which statistics are reported. 

( 2 ) Not reported. 

( 3 ) Less than .5 per cent. 

( 4 ) Total for the nine states listed. 

Source: Table XXXVII. 



1930 
5,263 

520 

930 

34 

1,252 

1,016 

150 

96 

69 

24 
4,091 



1940 
9,722 

1,127 

1,918 

86 

2,413 

1,818 

252 

196 

245 

18 
8,073 



1910 

5 
11 

1 
15 
14 

2 

2 

1 

( 3 ) 
51 



-Percentage of Total- 
1920 1930 



6 
13 

1 
19 
16 

1 
2 



59 



10 

18 

1 

24 

19 

3 

2 



( 3 ) 
78 



1940 



12 

20 

1 

25 

19 

2 

2 



( 3 ) 
83 



65 



shown a gain but has not equaled pre-depression 
levels. Annual consumption in California for the 
period 1938-42 has averaged but 19,670 bales. 

Per-Capita Consumption 

Table XL shows, by years, from 1911 to 1942, 
the total and per-capita consumption in the United 
States of cotton, wool, silk and rayon. Chart I 
shows graphically the comparative per-capita 
consumption of these fibers for selected years of 
this period. 



1934 to 4.86 pounds in 1941, and for silk from .19 
pound in 1941 to .80 pound in 1929. Rayon has 
shown the most pronounced per-capita increase, 
from .02 pound in 1911 to 4.62 pounds in 1942. 

As reflected in Chart I, the per-capita consump- 
tion of cotton is much greater than that of wool, 
silk, or rayon. In fact, 1940 per-capita consump- 
tion of cotton was roughly 10 times as great as 
either wool or rayon and 5 times as great as wool, 
silk and rayon combined. 

Per-capita consumption of cotton and wool in 



TABLE XL 

Cotton and Other Fibers: Estimated Total and Per Capita-Consumption, United States 
Total 







Million Pounds 


Year 


Cotton (') 


Wool ( 2 ) 


Silk ( 3 ) 


1911 


2,478 


248 


26 


1912 


2,665 


278 


30 


1913 


2,700 


229 


34 


1914 


2,716 


272 


31 


1915 


• 3,094 


337 


37 


1916 


3,272 


362 


40 


1917 


3,155 


345 


43 


1918 


2,789 


399 


48 


1919 


3,097 


329 


55 


1920 


2,370 


314 


39 


1921 


2,819 


343 


52 


1922 


3,200 


407 


58 


1923 


2,710 


422 


62 


1924 


2,960 


342 


60 


1925 


3,085 


350 


76 


1926 


3,482 


343 


77 


1927 


3,313 


354 


85 


1928 


3,434 


333 


87 


1929 


2,976 


368 


97 


1930 


2,550 


263 


81 


1931 


2,393 


311 


88 


1932 


3,004 


230 


75 


1933 


2,810 


317 


70 


1934 


2,609 


230 


60 


1935 


3,102 


418 


72 


1936 


3,884 


406 


68 


1937 


2,855 


381 


64 


1938 


3,372 


285 


57 


1939 


3,833 


397 


55 


1940 


4,751 


408 


48 


1941 


5,470 


648 


26 


1942 ( 6 ) 


5,318 


604 









Per Capita 








Pounds 




yon ( 4 ) 


Cotton (0 


Wool ( 2 ) 


Silk ( 3 ) 


Rayon («) 


2 


26.2 


2.64 


.28 


.02 


3 


27.7 


2.92 


.31 


.03 


4 


27.5 


2.35 


.35 


.04 


5 


27.2 


2.74 


.31 


.05 


7 


30.6 


3.35 


.37 


.06 


7 


31.8 


3.55 


.40 


.06 


7 


30.3 


3.33 


.42 


.07 


6 


26.6 


3.82 


46 


.06 


9 


29.3 


3.13 


.52 


.09 


9 


22.0 


2.95 


.36 


.08 


20 


25.7 


3.16 


.48 


.18 


25 


28.8 


3.69 


.52 


.22 


33 


23.9 


3.77 


.55 


29 


42 


25.7 


3.00 


.52 


.37 


58 


26.4 


3.02 


.66 


.50 


61 


29.4 


2.92 


.65 


.52 


100 


27.6 


2.97 


.71 


.84 


101 


28.3 


2.76 


.72 


.83 


133 


24.3 


3.02 


.80 


1.10 


119 


20.6 


2.14 


.66 


.97 


159 


19.2 


2.51 


.71 


1.28 


155 


24.0 


1.84 


.60 


1.24 


217 


22.3 


2.53 


.56 


1.73 


197 


20.6 


1.82 


.48 


1.56 


259 


24.3 


3.28 


.57 


2.03 


323 


30.2 


3.17 


.53 


2.52 


308 


22.1 


2.96 


.50 


2.39 


327 


25.9 


2.19 


.44 


2.52 


459 


29.2 


3.03 


.42 


3.50 


488 


35.8 


3.09 


.36 


3.70 


586 


40.8 


4.86 


.19 


4.40 


622 


39.2 


4.48 




4.62 



0) Year beginning Sept. 1, 1911-13; beginning August 1, 1914-40. 

( 2 ) Apparel and carpet wool, reduced to scoured basis; production plus net imports, 1911-17; consumption, 1918-40 on 
calendar-year basis. 

( 3 ) Net imports, 1911-13; imports for consumption, 1934-40, on calendar-year basis. 

( 4 ) From Rayon Organon. Includes filament yarn and staple fiber. Calendar-year basis. Bureau of Agricultural Economics 
calendar-year figures divided by July 1 population estimates to get per-capita figures, except for cotton, crop-year figures divided by 
January 1 population estimates to get per-capita figures. 

( 5 ) Preliminary. 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Agricultural Statistics," 1942, Table 166, and 1943, Table 95. 



As shown in Table XL, the per-capita consump- 
tion of cotton has ranged during the 32-year 
period 1911-42 from a low of 19.2 pounds in 1931 
to a high of 40.8 pounds in 1941. The range for 
wool consumption has been from 1.82 pounds in 



the 5-year period 1936-40 was substantially the 
same as in the like period 1911-15, while silk 
showed a slight increase. Consumption of cotton 
and wool has increased since the 1929 depression. 
Per-capita consumption increases in 1939, 1940, 



66 



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1941 and 1942 in cotton, wool, and rayon and de- 
creases in silk are a direct result of the war. Never- 
theless, in the years just preceding, per-capita 
consumption of cotton was approximately the same 
as in the middle 20's. The average for the 4 years 
1935-38 was 25.6 pounds, compared with 26.3 
pounds for the 4 years 1923-26. Thus, per-capita 
consumption of cotton (and also wool) was main- 
tained in the face of increased rayon consumption. 
This occurred without any apparent organized 
joint effort on the part of cotton growers and 
manufacturers prior to 1939 to develop new uses 
for their products. The manufacturers did, how- 
ever, with limited funds, do some research and 
promotional work through the Cotton-Textile In- 
stitute, Inc. 

It was not until war began in Europe that the 
joint interests of the growers and manufacturers 
were allied through the Cotton-Textile Institute 
and the National Cotton Council of America, with 
sufficient funds to organize and set into motion 
the research and promotional machinery necessary 
for further development of cotton. This appears 
to be the greatest effort ever made by the Ameri- 
can cotton industry to hold its own in the com- 
petition among fibers. 

Since the war began many new uses for cotton 
have been developed, a great number of which 
are still secret. There is no doubt that through 
modern research and thorough-going market an- 
alysis ways will be found to increase per-capita 
consumption of cotton, at home and abroad. 

Cotton Production and Consumption in the 
United States 

Cotton consumption in the United States norm- 
ally is about 45 per cent of the crop. Abnormal 
situations arise occasionally, as in 1921, when we 
consumed 74 per cent of a crop that was excep- 
tionally small due to boll-weevil damage. By con- 
trast, in 1937, we consumed only 32 per cent of 
the crop, as a result of unusually large production 
coupled with general business recession. 

Since the beginning of the present war in 1939, 
our consumption has been greater than ever be- 
fore. For example, consumption in 1939, 1940, 
1941 and 1942 was 68 per cent, 79 per cent, 106 
per cent, and 89 per cent, respectively, of produc- 
tion. Tables IV, XV, XXXVI and XXXVII show 



production and consumption of cotton in the 
United States. 

Cotton-Growing States 

Except in North Carolina, South Carolina, and 
Virginia, consumption in the cotton-growing states 
prior to 1921 was generally less than 50 per cent 
of their production. Since then consumption has 
steadily increased in most of these states, while 
production has been about the same or less. This 
has resulted in recent years in a cotton deficiency 
in certain of the states which consume as well 
as produce cotton, notably in Alabama, Georgia, 
North Carolina, and South Carolina. A compari- 
son between production and consumption in the 
states which both produce and consume cotton ap- 
pears in Table XLI. The ratio of consumption to 
production increased from 1910 to 1940 in Ala- 
bama by 125 percentage points, in Georgia by 165 
percentage points, in North Carolina by 252 per- 
centage points, and in South Carolina by 142 per- 
centage points. The increase in these states was 
even greater in 1941. Consumption in Alabama 
exceeded production in 1941 by as much as 67 
per cent. 

Consumption in Georgia has been materially 
greater than production in every year since 1935, 
except 1937, the largest production year for the 
country. The all-time record for cotton consump- 
tion in Georgia was in 1942, when 2,296,000 bales 
were consumed against a production of 853,000 
bales. 

Since 1915, the consumption in North Carolina 
has been materially greater than the production. 
The only exception was 1920, when 98 per cent of 
production was consumed. The present war has 
caused consumption figures to show a sharp con- 
trast with production figures ; 2,854,000 bales were 
consumed in 1942 and 735,000 bales produced. 

The situation in South Carolina is substantially 
the same as in North Carolina, consumption hav- 
ing consistently exceeded production since 1921. 
Consumption exceeded production in both North 
and South Carolina in 1941 by more than 400 
per cent. 

Since consumption greatly exceeds production 
in Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, and South 
Carolina, there is necessarily a considerable trans- 
portation haul of cotton from the low-consuming 



68 



^ 



states of Louisiana and Mississippi and those west 
of the Mississippi River. The consumption in 
Texas normally has been less than 5 per cent of 
production, and at least 90 per cent of the Texas 
cotton has moved through Texas Gulf ports for 
export or for coastwise movement to New Eng- 
land. However, with the export market practically 
closed as a result of the war, Texas cotton has 
been and is now moving into the Southeast and 
Carolinas for consumption. During 1939, 1940, 
1941, and 1942 production has exceeded consump- 
tion in Texas by more than 2,000,000 bales, and 
most of this has moved via rail into the Southeast 
and Carolinas. 

Production and Consumption in Georgia 

Georgia is the only state for which both pro- 
duction and consumption data by grade and staple 



are made available by the United States Depart- 
ment of Agriculture. 

In 1938 the mills of Georgia consumed 496,800 
bales more than were produced. There was a pro- 
duction surplus of only one staple length — about 
1,700 bales of cotton shorter than %". The major 
production deficiency was in cotton 1-1/16" and 
longer — 251,200 bales more were consumed than 
produced. The Mississippi Delta was the primary 
source of supply of this cotton. A deficiency of 
about 120,000 bales of 1" cotton also existed. 

There has been no material improvement in the 
grade of Georgia's cotton in the last 15 years. 
Records show that of the 1940 crop about 91,000 
bales, or approximately 9 per cent, were improp- 
erly ginned, reducing the quality by one or more 
grades. Usually there is little mill demand for 
low-grade, long-staple cotton. 



United States 

Alabama 

Georgia 

Mississippi 

North Carolina 

South Carolina 

Tennessee 

Virginia 

Texas 

California 



TABLE XLI 
Cotton Produced and Consumed, United States and Selected States— 1910, 1920, 1930 and 1940 



Pro- 
duced 

11,568 

1,192 

1,812 

1,212 

753 

1,211 

321 

16 

2,950 

6 



-1910- 



Con- Per- 
sumed cent (') 



4,498 

247 

489 

26 

697 

619 

70 

78 

41 

13 



39 
21 
27 
2 
93 
51 
22 

483 
1 

223 



Bales (000 Omitted) 
—1920- 



Pro- 
duced 

13,271 

670 

1,447 

900 

949 

1,652 

315 

22 

4,148 

78 



Con- 
sumed 

4,893 
310 
614 

51 
926 
776 

75 
105 

62 
( 2 ) 



Per- 
cent 

37 

46 

43 

4 

98 

47 

24 

481 

2 



13,756 
1,445 
1,597 
1,458 

801 
1,015 

371 

43 

3,886 

256 



-1930- 



Pro- Con- Per- 
duced sumed cent 



5,263 

520 

930 

34 

1,252 

1,016 

150 

96 

69 

24 



38 

36 

58 

2 

156 

100 

41 

225 

2 

10 



( J ) Per cent consumption is of production. 

( 2 ) Consumption figures not reported separately. 

Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census, "Cotton Production and Distribution." 



12,298 

773 

1,001 

1,238 

744 

944 

504 

25 

3.094 

532 



-1940- 



Pro- Con- Per- 
duced sumed cent 



9,722 

1,127 

1,918 

86 

2,413 

1,818 

252 

196 

245 

18 



79 
146 
192 
7 
325 
193 

50 
788 



69 



[This page blank.] 



70 



.. 



Chapter VI 
Exports and Imports 



World Cotton Exports 

The United States, India, Egypt, Turkey, Bel- 
gian Congo, Iran, Kenya, Uganda, Anglo-Egyp- 
tian Sudan, Russia, China, Argentina, Brazil, 
Peru, and Mexico in the aggregate normally ex- 
port 95 per cent or more of all world cotton 
exports. 

Table XLII shows total cotton exports from 
these 15 leading exporting countries combined, 
and from the United States, and the percentage 
of the United States to the total. 



heavily. Of these Brazil is by far the largest cot- 
ton-exporting country, with Peru next. Of the 
total world cotton exports in 1937, Brazil and 
Peru exported 9 per cent and 3 per cent, respec- 
tively. 

Although our exports have decreased since 1933, 
we still averaged 44 per cent of the total from 
1934 through 1937. Even now the United States 
is by far the world's largest cotton-exporting 
country. Based on the 1934-37 average, we ex- 
ported twice as much as India, the next country. 



TABLE XLII 
World 0) Cotton Exports Compared with United States Cotton Exports 

Bales ( 2 ) (000 Omitted) 

Year 

1909 
1910 

1911 
1912 
1913 
1914 
1915 

1916 
1917 
1918 
1919 
1920 

1921 
1922 
1923 
1924 
1925 

1926 
1927 
1928 
1929 
1930 

1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 

1936 
1937 

(') Total of the United States, India, Egypt, Turkey, Belgian Congo, Iran, Kenya, Uganda, Anglo-Egyptian Sudan, Russia, 
China, Argentina, Brazil, Peru, and Mexico. 

( 2 ) American cotton in running bales, foreign in bales of 478 pounds. 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Statistics on Cotton" December, 1939; "World Cotton Situation." 







United States 






Per cent of 


Vorld 0) 


United States 


World 


9,915 


6,206 


63 


11,801 


7,788 


66 


14,275 


10,719 


75 


12,552 


8,746 


70 


14,324 


9,142 


64 


11,782 


8,323 


71 


9,531 


5,896 


62 


8,458 


5,300 


63 


7,299 


4,288 


59 


8,528 


5,592 


66 


10,965 


6,545 


60 


8,760 


5,745 


66 


10,743 


6,184 


58 


10,088 


4,823 


49 


10,807 


5,656 


53 


13,637 


8,005 


59 


13,753 


8,051 


59 


16,119 


10,927 


68 


13,025 


7,752 


61 


14,172 


8,044 


57 


12,626 


6,690 


53 


12,440 


6,760 


54 


13,219 


8,708 


66 


13,061 


8,419 


65 


13,357 


7,534 


56 


10,950 


4,799 


44 


12,909 


5,973 


46 


13,705 


5,440 


40 


11,894 


5,598 


47 



From 1909 through 1933, the United States 
consistently exported more than 50 per cent of the 
total. In several years we exported 70 per cent or 
more of the total. India and Egypt have ranked 
next to the United States in cotton exports for 
many years. A marked increase in cotton exports 
has been shown by South American countries, 
especially since 1934, when our exports declined 



Due to the present war, 1937 is the last year for 
which complete figures are available. 

American Cotton Exports 

Table XLIII shows production and exports of 
American cotton for each year from 1909 to 1940 
and the percentage of exports to production. From 
1909 through 1935, the United States, with few 



72 



exceptions, exported more than half of its cotton 
crop. The exceptions were during World War I 
and in 1920 and 1930. Our cotton exports aver- 
aged 8,944,000 bales for the 5-year period 1910-14, 
but fell below 6,000,000 in 1914 and below 5,000,- 
000 in 1917. 



cotton production abroad, and the depression. 
Loans on cotton by the Federal government in an 
effort to support prices, beginning in 1929, also 
had some effect along this line. United States cot- 
ton exports gained in 1931 because of a short crop 
in India. 



Year 




Beginning 




Aug. 1 


Production 


1909 


10,073 


1910 


11,568 


1911 


15,533 


1912 


13,489 


1913 


13,983 


1914 


15,906 


1915 


11,068 


1916 


11,364 


1917 


11,248 


1918 


11,906 


1919 


11,326 


1920 


13,271 


1921 


7,978 


1922 


9,729 


1923 


10,171 


1924 


13,639 


1925 


16,123 


1926 


17,755 


1927 


12,783 


1928 


14,297 


1929 


14,548 


1930 


13,756 


1931 


16,629 


1932 


12,710 


1933 


12,664 


1934 


9,472 


1935 


10,420 


1936 


12,141 


1937 


18,252 


1938 


11,623 


1939 


11,481 


1940 


12,298 



TABLE XLIII 

Cotton Production and Exports, United States 

Bales C 1 ) (000 Omitted) 



Exports 

6,206 

7,788 

10,719 
8,746 
9,142 
8,323 
5,896 

5,300 
4,288 
5,592 
6,545 
5,745 

6,184 
4,823 
5,656 
8,005 
8,051 

10,927 
7,752 
8,044 
6,690 
6,760 

8,708 
8,419 
7,534 
4,799 
5,973 

5,440 
5,598 
3,327 
6,192 
1,112 



Per cent 

62 
67 

69 
65 
65 
52 
53 

47 
38 
47 
58 
43 

78 
50 
56 
59 
50 

62 
61 
56 
46 
49 

52 
66 
60 
59 

57 

45 
31 
29 
54 
9 



(') Running bales, counting round bales as half bales. 



Source: U. S. Dept. of Commerce, Cotton Production and Distribution, Bulletin 
179, Table 25, p. 45. 



In 1922, due to deficient crops in 1921 and 1922, 
exports again fell below 5,000,000 bales, although 
they had reached 6,500,000 in 1919. 

An all-time high was established in 1926, when 
we exported a total of 10,927,000 bales. While our 
cotton production was approximately the same in 
1929 and 1930 as in 1928, exports were more than 
1,000,000 bales under 1928 and were less than 50 
per cent of production. This decrease was the 
result of heavy buying of the 1926 American crop 
by foreign cotton-consuming countries, increased 



In 1934 cotton exports declined almost 3,000,000 
bales. This was caused primarily by pegging of 
cotton prices in this country and increased pro- 
duction in other countries during the preceding 5 
years, resulting in a world supply of more than 
43,000,000 bales. Our exports since then have 
never been as great in any single year as they were 
in the lowest year during the 1924-33 period. 

The present war is responsible for the record 
low of 1,112,000 bales of American cotton exported 
in 1940. 



73 



Exports, By Countries and Customs Districts 

Table XLIV shows a breakdown, by country of 
destination, of American cotton exports, by 5-year 
intervals, from 1924 to 1939. For many years cot- 
ton exported from the United States has gone prin- 
cipally to the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan, 
France, and Italy. The United Kingdom ranked 
first until 1926. Germany then replaced it as the 
largest user of our cotton, and held this position 
until 1931, when Japan took the lead. 

From 1931 through 1938 more American cotton 
went to Japan than to any other country, except 



in 1932 when Germany again ranked first, and in 
1937 when the United Kingdom took the lead. The 
latter again was first in 1939. 

Since 1934 exports of American cotton to Ger- 
many have steadily declined. This probably re- 
flects the marked increase in the use of synthetic 
fibers in Germany. Table XLIV shows that Ger- 
many took 21 per cent and 25 per cent of our total 
cotton exports in 1924 and 1929, respectively, but 
only 8 per cent in 1934 and only 1 per cent in 
1939. The causes of this diversion to synthetic 
fibers are rooted in the political, economic, and 



TOTAL 

United Kingdom 

Germany 

France 

Italy 

Belgium 

Spain 

Netherlands 

Poland 

Portugal 

Sweden 

Russia 

Other Europe 

Japan 

China 

British Indies 

Canada 

Other Countries 



1924 
8,239 

2,605 

1.766 

933 

748 



TABLE XLIV 

Exports of Cotton From the United States by Countries of Destination 

-Bales (0 (000 Omitted)— 
1929 1934 



1,089 
850 

248 



7,096 

1,306 

1,770 

860 

705 

182 

285 

143 

( 2 ) 
53 
54 

165 

44 



,071 

232 

15 

185 

26 



5,066 

787 
382 
383 
500 
100 

258 
65 

222 
45 
92 
58 

104 

1,605 

163 

50 

226 

26 



1939 
6,471 

1,954 
36 

776 
578 
217 

295 

171 

17 

35 

204 

200 

916 
421 
90 
426 
135 





— Percentage 


of Total — 




1924 


1929 


1934 


1939 


100 


100 


100 


100 


32 


18 


16 


30 


21 


25 


8 


1 


11 


12 


8 


12 


9 


10 


10 


9 




3 


2 


3 




4 


5 


4 




2 


1 


3 






4 


( 3 ) 




1 


1 


1 




1 


2 


3 




2 


1 




13 


1 


2 


3 


10 


15 


32 


14 




3 


3 


7 




( 3 ) 


1 


1 




3 


4 


7 


3 


( 3 ) 


( 3 ) 


2 



(') Of 500 lbs. gross weight. 

( 2 ) Less than 500 bales 

( 3 ) Less than one-half of 1 percent. 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Agricultural Statistics," 1936 and 1942; "Yearbook of Agriculture," 1928. 

TABLE XLIV (Continued) 
Exports of Cotton From the United States by Principal Customs Districts 



Customs 










District 


1924 


1929 


1934 


1939 


New York 


560.2 


99.0 


23.6 


12.8 


Virginia 


195.9 


110.5 


11.4 


7.5 


North Carolina 


102.3 


98.9 


8.1 




South Carolina 


112.7 


126.3 


114.6 


28.0 


Georgia 


456.9 


373.6 


140.7 


45.9 


Mobile 


58.7 


294.9 


215.9 


100.8 


New Orleans 


1,238.1 


1,198.7 


1,084.1 


958.5 


Galveston 


3,496.7 


4,113.2 


3,140.4 


2,461.7 


San Antonio 


8.7 


345.4 


278.4 


259.8 


Los Angeles 


62.0 


260.4 


224.1 


256.1 


San Francisco 


101.4 


60.8 


60.6 


94.6 


Michigan 


85.6 


158.1 


174.6 


224.1 


All Others 


174.2 


177.9 


276.6 


109.1 



Total 6,653.4 7,417.7 5,753.1 4,558.9 

The totals in this table do not agree with those listed elsewhere in this report. Totals in Part 1 of this 
table are for crop years and bales of 500 pounds gross weight. The totals in Part 2 are for calendar years and 
running bales. Totals in Table XLIII are for 12 months beginning August 1 of the stated year and are run- 
ning bales. 

Source: U. S. Dept. of Commerce, Foreign Commerce and Navigation. 

74 



military policies in Germany which culminated in 
the present war, and the future in these respects 
will depend very largely upon the outcome of the 
war. 

As the second part of Table XLIV indicates, 
there has been a marked shift between 1924 and 
1939 in the proportion of exports cleared through 
the different customs districts of the United 
States. The Eastern Seaboard districts have 
fallen from 21 per cent of the total in 1924 to 2 
per cent of the total in 1939. The Gulf districts 
rose from 72 per cent to 77 per cent. 

In considering these percentage distribution 
changes, it should be borne in mind that total 
exports, and with but few exceptions, exports 
from the principal customs districts, have fallen 
heavily since 1924. 

Packaging Methods 

The packaging of American cotton for export 
is an item of great importance. American bales 
usually are poorly covered and unattractive. At 
times, they have no covering whatever on the sides, 
and the bagging is so badly cut and torn as to give 
little or no protection. Because of these conditions, 
the American bale contains considerable dirt and 
stained and soiled cotton which must be removed 
before the rest of the cotton can be used. Foreign 
bales, on the other hand, usually are neat and 
attractive, as well as adequately protected. 

The question of tare on American bales also 
arises in foreign markets. Our bales carry approx- 
imately 3 per cent more tare weight than foreign 
bales. As cotton is sold on a gross-weight basis, 
this places American cotton at an added disadvan- 
tage in foreign markets. 

Most American bales are covered with burlap 
bagging, which is somewhat heavier and less 
expensive than cotton-cloth covering. Government 
experts and leaders of the cotton industry have 
long urged that it would be to the industry's 
advantage to cover its bales with cotton cloth 
rather than burlap. Not only would this better pro- 
tect the cotton and make a lighter and more pre- 
sentable bale, but it would also create an addi- 
tional consumption outlet for between 100,000 and 
200,000 bales of cotton annually. 

Value of Cotton Exports 

Cotton was for many years the most important 



article of American exports from a monetary 
standpoint. Since 1913 the value of raw cotton 
exports has on several occasions exceeded 20 per 
cent of the value of all merchandise exports. 

Table XLV compares the respective values of 
our cotton exports and our total merchandise 1 
exports, by years from 1913 to 1940. Cotton rep- 
resented 26 per cent of the value of total mer- 
chandise exports in 1914, 24 per cent in 1933, 23 
per cent in 1913, 22 per cent in 1925 and 1932, 
and 21 per cent in 1924. After 1933, however, the 
percentage has been below 20 per cent and is 
steadily decreasing, having fallen as low as 7 per 
cent in 1938, the last prewar year. 

A further illustration of the importance of cot- 
ton exports to our economy is afforded by com- 
paring the value of our cotton exports with the 
total value of all imports for consumption. At 
times the value of cotton exports has amounted 
to as much as 30 per cent of the value of all im- 
ports for consumption. Table XLVI compares the 
respective values during representative years. 

United States Imports of Cotton 

This country imports a relatively small quan- 
tity of cotton. In the 32-year period of 1909-40, 
annual imports were never as much as 500,000 
bales except in 1919, when we imported 720,000 
bales. From 1930 through 1940 our imports ranged 
from 107,000 to 266,000 bales and averaged 151,- 
000 bales. Most of the foreign cotton we import is 
grown in British India, Egypt, Mexico, and China, 
in that order. 

Short-staple cotton (under lVs") is imported 
duty-free Long-staple cotton (lVs" an d over) is 
subject to a duty of 7 cents per pound. Effective 
September 20, 1939, imports were limited under 
Section 22 of the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 
1933, as amended, to 14,517,000 pounds of short- 
staple and 45,656,000 pounds of long-staple cotton. 
The restriction on short-staple imports does not 
apply to Asiatic cotton of less than %" staple. 

Imports from India and China are short, rough 
Asiatic cottons, used in combination with Ameri- 
can cotton to impart a wool-like nap to cotton 
blankets. Egyptian cotton imported is long-staple, 
lVs" or over. It is used principally for sewing 



1 Merchandise includes everything but gold and silver. 



75 



thread, tire fabric, and tine woven goods. The 
amount of South American cotton imported is 
almost negligible. 



Table XLVII shows cotton imported by the 
United States from the various countries, by dec- 
ades, from 1910 to 1940. 



TABLE XLV 

United States Total Merchandise Exports Compared With Cotton Exports 



Year 

1913 
1914 
1915 

1916 
1917 
1918 
1919 
1920 

1921 
1922 
1923 
1924 
1925 

1926 
1927 
1928 
1929 
1930 

1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 

1936 
1937 
1938 
1939 
1940 

Merchandise includes everything but gold and silver. 

Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, "Statistical Abstract of the United States," 
1941, Tables 585, 589. 



(000 Omitted) 






Total Merchan- 
dise Exports 


Raw Cotton 
Exports 


Cotton Per cent 
of Total 


$2,428,506 
2,329,684 
2,716,178 


$547,357 
610,475 
376,218 


23 
26 

14 


5,422,642 
6,169,617 
6,047,875 
7,749,816 
8,080,481 


545,229 

575,304 

674,123 

1,137,371 

1,136,409 


10 

9 

11 

15 

14 


4,378,928 
3,765,091 
4,090,715 
4,497,649 

4,818,722 


534,242 
673,250 
807 , 103 
950,581 
1,059,751 


12 
18 
20 
21 
22 


4,711,721 
4,758,864 
5,030,099 » 
5,157,083 
3,781,172 


814,429 
826,306 
920,008 
770,830 
496,798 


17 
17 
16 
15 
13 


2,377,982 
1,576,151 
1,647,220 
2,100,135 
2,243,081 


325,667 
345,164 
398,212 
372,755 
390,898 


14 
22 
24 

18 
17 


2,418,969 
3,298,929 
3,057,169 
3,123,343 
3,984,181 


361,028 
368,660 
228,647 
242,965 
213,400 


15 

11 

7 

8 

5 



TABLE XLVI 

Comparison of 
Total Imports for Consumption with Cotton Exports 



Value (000 Omitted) 



Year 

1919 
1924 
1933 
1939 



Total Imports for 
Consumption 

$3,827,683 
3,575,111 
1,433,013 
2,276,099 



Cotton Exports 

$1,137,371 
950,581 
398,212 
242,965 



Cotton Exports, 

Per cent of 
Total Imports 

30 
27 
28 
11 



TABLE XLVII 

Cotton Imports to the United States by Countries of Origin 





Bales 0) (000 Omitted) 








1910 


1920 


1930 


1940 ('-') 


India 


5 


11 


35 


119 


Egypt 


185 


91 


22 


67 


Mexico 


( 3 ) 


92 


14 


9 


China 


19 


24 


31 




Peru 


10 


24 


2 


4 


Brazil 


( 4 ) 


( 4 ) 


(«) 


2 


Other Countries 


19 


22 


4 


1 



TOTAL 



238 



263 



107 



203 



Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, 
Abstract of the United States, 1941," Table 584. 



'Statistical 



(') Of 478 pounds net. 

( 2 ) Preliminary. 

( 3 ) Less than 500 bales. 

( 4 ) Included in "Other Countries". 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Agricultural 
Statistics," 1936, Table 429; 1942, Table 696; "World Cotton 
Situation," p. 24. 



76 



Chapter VII 
Supply and Distribution 



World Supply, Demand and Carry-Over 

World production, mill consumption, carry-over, 
and additions to or reductions in carry-over of 
commercial cotton, by years, from 1920 to 1942, 
are shown in Table XLVIII. 

World production and consumption were closely 
in balance in 1928, the year preceding the de- 
pression. Carry-over at the end of that year to- 
taled 10,541,000 bales, or approximately 4 months' 
world consumption. As the depression made itself 
felt in 1929, 1930, and 1931, consumption fell off 
sharply, while production remained at the level 
of preceding years. This resulted in a world carry- 
over on July 31, 1932, of 18,336,000 bales, repre- 
senting nearly 9 months' requirements at the then- 
prevailing rate of consumption. 

The rise in world carry-over of American cot- 
ton from 4,500,000 bales in 1929 to 13,000,000 

TABLE XLVIII 

Commercial Cotton: World Production, Mill Consumption, 
Changes in Carry-over, and Carry-over 
at End of Season 





Bales C 1 ) (000 omitted) 










Increase or 


Carry-over 








Decrease in 


at End of 


Year Beginning 


Produc- 


Consump . 


Carry- 


Season 


August 1 


tion 


tion 


over ( 2 ) 


July 31 


1920 


20,628 


17,151 


+ 3,477 


15,169 


1921 


15,173 


19,778 


-4,605 


10,494 


1922 


18,451 


21,337 


-2,886 


7,571 


1923 


19,090 


20,027 


- 937 


6,614 


1924 


24,094 


22,734 


+ 1,360 


7,948 


1925 


26,743 


24,168 


+2,575 


10,473 


1926 


27,930 


25,679 


+ 2,251 


12,654 


1927 


23,343 


25,442 


-2,099 


10,535 


1928 


25,802 


25,778 


+ 24 


10,541 


1929 


26,251 


24,875 


+ 1,376 


11,892 


1930 


25,376 


22,432 


+2,944 


14,808 


1931 


26,479 


22,889 


+3,590 


18,336 


1932 


23,461 


24,651 


-1,190 


17,116 


1933 


26,066 


25,602 


+ 464 


17,540 


1934 


23,042 


25,480 


-2,438 


15,072 


1935 


26,141 


27,529 


-1,388 


13,649 


1936 


30,729 


30,638 


+ 91 


13,695 


1937 


36,745 


27,573 


+ 9,172 


22,702 


1938 


27,509 


28,507 


- 998 


21,638 


1939 


27,326 


28.486 


-1,160 


20,272 


1940 


28,594 


26,542' 


+2,052 


22,041 


1941 


26,201 


25,572 


+ 629 


22,520 


1942 


26,483 


24,850 


+ 1,633 


23,914 



(!) American in running bales (counting round bales as half 
bales); foreign in bales of approximately 478 pounds net. 

( 2 ) This column is the difference between production and 
consumption. Carry-over also is affected to a minor extent by 
such factors as cotton lost by fire or otherwise and reclaimed 
cotton. Hence this column will not precisely agree with changes 
in the final column. 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture. Bureau of Agri- 
cultural Economics, "The Cotton Situation," October 1943, 
page 13. 



bales in 1932 caused prices in the United States 
to fall from 16 cents to less than 6 cents per pound. 
Despite lower prices, domestic consumption fell 
from 7,000,000 bales in 1928 to less than 5,000,000 
bales in 1931. This demonstrated that the cotton 
farmer could not depend upon lower prices to stim- 
ulate consumption sufficiently to solve the surplus 
problem. 

The 1932 season marked an upturn in world 
economic conditions, but cotton prices remained 
at an extremely low level. World consumption 
showed a pronounced recovery, and production was 
substantially below the level of the late 1920's. 
For the first time in 5 years a reduction in carry- 
over took place. 

In 1933 the United States began cotton control x . 
During the 4 years 1933-36 the harvested 
area averaged only 28,582,000 acres, in compari- 
son with 42,462,000 acres during the preceding 10 
years. Ginnings averaged 11,225,000 running bales 
in the 1933-36 period, contrasted with 14,400,000 
running bales in the 1923-32 period. Various loan 
programs, acreage-restriction measures, and an 
improvement in general business operated to raise 
and hold prices substantially higher than in de- 
pression years. Meanwhile, however, cotton acre- 
age and production abroad were increasing rap- 
idly. In 1936 production of commercial cotton 
abroad reached an all-time record of 19,679,000 2 
bales, in contrast with an annual average of 10,- 
635,000 bales during the 10 years 1920-29 and 
12,585,000 bales during the 10 years 1926-35. 

Due to increased consumption throughout the 
world and curtailment of production in the United 
States from 1933 through 1936, world carry-over 
was reduced to less than 14,000,000 running bales 
at the end of both the 1935 and 1936 seasons. 

In 1937 cotton acreage in the United States 
increased, following the Supreme Court decision 
which invalidated the production-control provi- 
sions of the original Agricultural Adjustment 
Act a , and yields in 1937 were far greater than 
in any other year on record. As a result, the United 
States crop reached an all-time high of 18,946,000 
bales which, coupled with a record foreign pro- 
duction of 19,679,000 bales, set an all-time peak 



1 See pages 18 and 19. 

2 Except where otherwise specified all figures for bales 
from here to the next heading are in bales of 478 lb. net. 

s For summary of this Act, see Appendix, page 94. 



78 



world production of 38,625,000 bales. Meanwhile, 
with the business recession in the United States 
and disturbed economic and political conditions in 
other areas, consumption declined abruptly, and 
the world cotton carry-over reached 22,702,000 
running bales on July 31, 1938. 

In 1938 new cotton-control measures under the 
Agricultural Adjustment Act were in effect, and 
production dropped sharply in the United States. 
Total world production was 9,525,000 bales below 
the record of 38,625,000 bales in the preceding 
year. Consumption recovered somewhat and ex- 
ceeded production by 934,000 running bales, but 
the 1939 season began with 21,638,000 running 
bales on hand, 9 months' supply. 

Although world production has decreased sharp- 
ly 1 since the 1937 peak it has not fallen below world 
consumption, except slightly in 1938 and 1939, 
so that the end of the 1942 season, July 31, 1943, 
saw a world carry-over of almost 24,000,000 bales, 
considerably greater than ever before. 

Domestic Supply, Demand and Carry-Over 

Table XLIX shows the supply, distribution and 
carry-over of cotton, domestic and foreign, in 
the United States, by years, from 1914 to 1942. 

Until 1928 the carry-over of cotton in the United 
States was usually equivalent to 6 months' con- 
sumption. Beginning with the 1929 depression, 
consumption and exports both fell below normal, 
but ginnings remained above 12,000,000 bales 
until 1934. Thus, carry-over in several instances 
greatly exceeded the cotton required for the next 
full season. 

Carry-over in the United States averaged 11,- 
597,000 bales for the 5-year period 1938-42. In 
each of these years carry-over was greater than 
consumption the following season, even though 



consumption was larger in 1941 than ever before. 

As shown in Table XLIX, the total supply of 
all cotton in the United States, which includes 
the carry-over from the previous year, ginnings, 
and imports, has been greater during each of the 
6 years 1937-42 than in any previous year. In 
these years supply averaged 23,325,000 bales. The 
record crop of 1937, reduction in consumption of 
more than 2,000,000 bales, and subnormal exports 
in 1937 resulted in the then-record carry-over of 
11,533,000 bales on August 1, 1938. This record 
was exceeded at the end of that season, when 
further reductions in exports caused carry-over 
to reach 13,033,000 bales. The greatest American 
supply of cotton in history (24,612,000 bales) oc- 
curred in 1939 as a result of the backlog of the 
2 previous years. 

The cotton supply in the United States during 
the 1942 season was 23,140,000 bales, of which 
62 per cent was 1-inch and less and 16 per cent 
was below white in grade. White cotton made up 
80 per cent of the supply, and of this white cotton 
54 per cent was below Middling. This shows that, 
because of the mills' desire to turn out yarns as 
rapidly as possible, the better grades of cotton 
in our supply have been used, leaving a tremend- 
ous amount of short and inferior cotton. Thus, 
while we have had during the past several seasons 
more than 10,000,000 bales in the carry-over and 
a yearly supply of more than 23,000,000 bales, a 
large percentage of this cotton has not been fit 
for spinning, certainly not at the rate our mills 
have been running since the beginning of the war. 

A new outlet for such inferior cotton has re- 
cently been discovered in the production of cotton 
insulation utilizing short-staple, low grade cotton. 
It is estimated that in 1944 cotton insulation will 
consume 175,000 bales of this sort of cotton. 



79 



TABLE XLIX 
Cotton Supply and Distribution, United States 











Bales (0 (000 Omitted) 














Carry-Over 
Beginning 
of Season 
Foreign Total 


Cli Tinli f 






Consumption 
Foreign Total 


Distribution — 

De- Exports 
stroyed ( 4 ) 


Carr? 
End oi 
Foreign 




Year 
eginning 
Aug. 1 


auppjy 

Ginnings 

in 

Season 

( 2 ) 


Imports 

( 3 ) 


Total 
Supply 


^-Over 
" Season 
Total 


1914 
1915 


73 
145 


1,366 
3,936 


16,162 
11,171 


363 

421 


17,891 
15,528 


222 
317 


5,597 
6,397 


35 
95 


8,323 
5,896 


143 

212 


3,936 
3,140 


1916 
1917 
1918 
1919 
1920 


212 

143 

111 

83 

283 


3,140 
2,720 
3,509 
4.445 
3,824 


11,418 
11,451 
12,147 
11,686 
13,558 


289 
217 
197 
683 
211 


14,847 
14,388 
15,853 
16,814 
17,593 


318 
184 
176 
417 
216 


6,789 
6,566 
5,766 
6,420 
4.893 


35 
25 
50 
25 
60 


5,303 

4,288 
5,592 
6,545 
5,744 


143 

111 

83 

283 
172 


2,720 
3,509 
4,445 
3,824 
6,896 


1921 
1922 
1923 
1924 
1925 


172 
166 
196 
117 
107 


6,896 
3,322 
2,325 
1,556 
1,610 


8,238 
10,045 
10,307 
13,969 
16,169 


352 
450 
272 
303 
314 


15,486 
13,817 
12,904 
15,828 
18,093 


297 

344 
328 
276 
280 


5,910 
6,666 
5,681 
6,193 
6,456 


70 
37 
20 
26 
50 


6,184 
4,789 
5,647 
7,999 
8,044 


166 
196 
117 
107 
129 


3,322 
2,325 
1,556 
1,610 
3,543 


1926 
1927 
1928 
1929 
1930 


129 
100 
111 
182 
208 


3,543 
3,762 
2,536 
2,312 
4,530 


18,014 
12,836 
14,481 
14,656 
13,789 


382 
321 
442 
368 
99 


21,939 
16,919 
17,459 
17,336 

18.418 


309 
299 
313 
302 
179 


7,190 
6,834 
7,091 
6,106 
5,263 


70 
20 
18 
25 

28 


10,917 
7,529 
8,038 
6,675 
6,757 


100 
111 

182 
208 
107 


3,762 
2,536 
2,312 
4,530 
6,370 


1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 


107 
98 
83 
96 

71 


6,370 
9,678 
8,165 
7,744 
7,208 


16,836 
12,948 
12,713 
9,515 
10,403 


107 
124 
137 
107 
155 


23,313 
22,750 
21,015 
17,366 
17.766 


122 
133 
148 
120 
131 


4,866 
6,137 
5,700 
5,361 
6.351 


62 
30 
40 
30 
35 


8,707 
8,418 
7,531 
4,767 
5,971 


98 
83 
96 
71 
73 


9,678 
8,165 
7,744 
7,208 
5,409 


1936 
1937 
1938 
1939 
1940 


73 
112 
87 
76 
95 


5,409 

4,499 

11,533 

13,033 

10,564 


12,269 
18,284 
11,617 
11,420 
12,318 


249 

158 
132 
159 
188 


17,927 
22,941 
23.282 
24,612 
23,069 


182 
132 
122 
128 
146 


7,950 

5,748 
6,858 
7,784 
9,722 


45 
65 
66 

73 
70 


5.433 
5,595 
3,325 
6,191 
1,112 


112 
87 
76 
95 

140 


4,499 
11,533 
13,033 
10,564 
12,166 


1941 
1942 


140 
135 


12,166 
10,640 


10,562 
12,500 


191( 5 ) 
( 6 ) 


22,928 
23,140 


196 
170 


11,170 
11,100 


50 
60 


1,1250 
( 6 ) 


I 135 

88 


10,640 
10,657 



(!) Domestic cotton in running bales, counting round bales as half bales; foreign cotton in equivalent 500-pound bales. 

( 2 ) Ginnings during the 12 months, August 1 through July 31. Excludes cotton from current crop ginned prior to August 1 
and includes cotton from next crop ginned prior to August 1 of the following year. Includes an allowance for "city crop" which 
consists of rebated samples and pickings from cotton damaged by fire and weather. 

( 3 ) Total imports minus re-exports. 

( 4 ) Total exports minus re-imports, except for the figures prior to 1919, which are total exports. 

( 5 ) Estimated by New York Cotton Exchange. 

( 6 ) Not available. 

Source: U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Agricultural Statistics" 1943. Table 78. 



80 



Chapter VIII 
Cotton Linters 



Description of Linters 

The cotton gin detaches from the seed only the 
longer fibers of lint, leaving the seed covered with 
short, fuzzy lint which must be at least partially 
removed for good milling results. After arriving 
at oil mills, the seed is passed through delinters, 
which cut off the short fibers. The product, known 
as linters, is pressed into bales averaging 600 
pounds. Seed from long-staple cotton yields almost 
twice as much linters as that from short-staple 
cotton. 

All oil-mill operators put the seed through a 
delinting machine at least once, and in the major- 
ity of instances it is run through twice. The terms 
"first cuts", "second cuts" and "millruns", de- 
scribe methods employed in delinting rather than 
the quality of the linters. 

Mills that put the seed through the delinter a 
second time take a very light first cut, with a 
closer second cut. The product of the first cut 
contains more of the longer staple, is practically 
free of foreign matter, and is known in the trade 
as "first-cut linters". This cut yields from 20 to 
50 pounds for each ton of seed. The second delint- 
ing produces "second-cut linters" which contain 
more of the shorter fibers and have a large 
amount of foreign matter. This cut yields from 
30 to 200 pounds for each ton of seed. When cot- 
tonseed is run through the delinting machine but 
once the product is known as "mill-run linters" 
and yields from 35 to 100 pounds for each ton of 
seed. 

During the 10-year period 1932-41 linters ob- 
tained per ton of cottonseed crushed averaged 147 
pounds. For the 4 years 1938-41, it averaged 168 
pounds. 

Use of Linters 

"First-cut" or "mill-run" linters are used 
chiefly for spinning low-grade yarns, which are 
used for carpets, mops, clotheslines, strings, wicks, 
etc., and for making mattresses, pads for automo- 
biles, upholstery, padding for horse-collars, and 
stuffing for cushions. This grade is also bleached, 
sterilized, and batted for surgical dressings, such 
as absorbent cotton, bandages, sterilized gauzes, 
etc. 

"Mill-run" and "second-cut" linters move to 
consumers in the chemical industry who use cellu- 
lose as a base for their products. Cotton linters 



contain 70 per cent to 85 per cent of available cel- 
lulose. The chemical industry converts them into 
gun cotton, nitrocellulose, smokeless powder, var- 
nishes, lacquers, rayon, etc. 

Grade, Color and Staple Lengths 

Under the Cotton Standards Act, 1923 1 , lint- 
ers are classified into 7 grades. These range from 
the highest first cuts to the lowest second cuts. 
Grades 1 and 2 represent first cuts, Grade 3 first 
cuts or mill-runs, Grade 4 mill-runs, Grade 5 mill- 
runs, and second cuts, and Grades 6 and 7 second 
cuts. Linters are usually olive, grayish, or buff. 
However, exposure to either air or light may 
change the color. Linters range in staple lengths 
from 5/32" to %". 

Production, Consumption and Exports 

Table L shows American production, consump- 
tion and exports of linters, by years, from 1909 to 
1943. Chart J shows graphically the trends of 
these statistics. Production has been steadily in- 
creasing since 1909 when the United States pro- 
duced 310,433 equivalent bales of 500 pounds. 2 
During the first World War, production for the 
first time exceeded 1,000,000 bales and, except for 
the poor crop year of 1921, it has consistently 
risen. During the 17-year period 1925-41 produc- 
tion of linters has been below 1,000,000 bales in 
only 3 years. The largest crop, of 1,819,000 bales, 
was produced in 1937. The present war has again 
stimulated linter production. 

War always stimulates the production of linters, 
because they are used in the manufacture of 
smokeless powder, gunwadding, etc. However, 
production of linters also increased in peacetime 
and in the face of decreased cotton production. 
Several factors may account for this: — 1) In- 
creased demand for linters to manufacture rayon ; 
2) Discovery of new uses for cellulose, such as 
paint, film, cellophane, artificial leather, plastics, 
etc; 3) Increased staple length of cotton. 

Production by States 

Table LI shows, by decades, from 1910, the pro- 
duction of linters in each state for which statis- 



1 See Appendix page 94, for summary of this Act. 
- All statistical bales under this and the next heading are 
equivalent bales of 500 pounds gross weight. 



82 



tics are compiled. For many years Texas has been 
the principal linter-producing state, with Missis- 
sippi and Georgia usually ranking next, in order. 
In recent years Arkansas has moved forward in 
the production of linters, and in 1940 it ranked 
next to Texas. In 1910 Texas produced 123,000 
bales, or 31 per cent of our entire crop. In the 



same year Georgia was the only other state pro- 
ducing over 50,000 bales. In 1940 Texas produc- 
tion had increased to 335,000 bales, Arkansas to 
203,000 bales, Mississippi to 196,000 bales, and 
Tennessee to 144,000 bales. These were increases 
of 212,000, 176,000, 152,000, and 126,000 bales, 
respectively, over 1910. 



TABLE L 

Linters 

Production, Consumption and Exports in the United States 

Bales (000 Omitted) 



Year 

1909 
1910 

1911 
1912 
1913 
1914 
1915 

1916 
1917 
1918 
1919 
1920 

1921 
1922 
1923 
1924 
1925 

1926 
1927 
1928 
1929 
1930 

1931 
1932 
1933 
1934 
1935 

1936 
1937 
1938 
1939 
1940 

1941 
1942 
1943 ( 5 ) 



Production (*) Consumption ( 2 ) Exports ( 3 ) 

Equivalent Percent- Percent- 

Running 500-lb. Bales Running age of 500-lb. age of 

Bales Gross Weight Bales 



Production Bales Production 



313 
398 

556 
602 
631 
832 
945 

1.300 

1.096 

910 

595 

429 

382 
591 
640 

858 
1,044 

1,042 

875 

1,086 

1,038 

824 

876 
741 
801 
805 
876 

1,127 
1,471 
1,113 
1,072 
1,208 

1,184 
1,355 
1,183 



310 
397 

558 
601 
639 
857 
931 

1,331 

1,126 

930 

608 

440 

398 
608 
669 
897 
1,115 

1,158 
1,016 

1,282 
1,241. 
986 

1,067 

912 

982 

1,001 

1,089 

1,407 
1,819 
1,378 
1,330 
1,507 

1,488 
1,706 
1,489 



177 
207 

238 
303 
307 
412 
881 

870 
1,119 
458 
342 
516 

639 
646 
537 
659 

804 

806 

780 
879 
805 
714 

637 
761 
767 
719 
734 

819 

715 

851 

1,061 

1,359 

1,488 
1,301 
1,362 



57 
52 

43 
50 
49 
50 
93 

67 

102 

50 

58 

120 

167 
109 

84 

77 
77 

77 
89 
81 
78 
87 

73 

102 

96 



73 
49 
76 
99 
113 

126 

97 

115 



( 4 ) 
( 4 ) 

( 4 ) 

( 4 ) 

( 4 ) 
226 
251 

474 

186 

84 

52 

53 

126 

48 
115 
200 
102 

278 
231 
219 
143 
132 

145 
218 
216 
262 
305 

340 
352 
269 
432 
30 



26 

27 

36 

17 

9 

9 

12 

32 

8 

17 

22 

9 

24 
23 
17 
12 
13 

14 
24 
22 
26 
28 

24 
19 
20 
33 

2 



(!) Year beginning August 1. 

( 2 ) Statistics for years prior to 1914 are for 12 months beginning September 1, 
thereafter Aug. 1. 

( 3 ) Year beginning July 1. 

( 4 ) Exports of cotton and linters were not shown separately prior to 1914 season. 

( 5 ) Preliminary. 

Sources: 

Production — U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census, Cotton 

Production and Distribution," Bulletin 179, Table 3. 
Consumption— U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census, "Cotton 

Production and Distribution," Bulletins 179, 175, 173, 169, 164, 156, 147, 

137 and 125. 
Export— U. S. Department of Agriculture, "Agricultural Statistics," 1942, 

Table 693; 1936, Table 426. 

83 



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Production in running bales. 
Consumption in running bales. 
Exports in 500-pound bales. 


















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1941 

1940 

1939 

1938 

1937 

1936 

1935 

1934 

1933 

1932 

1931 

1930 

1929 

1928 

1927 

1926 

!925 

1924 

1923 

1922 

1921 

1920 

1919 

1918 

1917 

1916 

1915 

1914 

1913 

1912 

1911 

1910 

1909 



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84 



TABLE LI 

Production of Linters in the United States by States 
Bales (i) (000 Omitted) 





1910 


1920 


1930 


1940 


United States 


397 


440 


986 


1,507 


Alabama 


29 


13 


72 


57 


Arizona 


( 2 ) 


( 2 ) 


11 


21 


Arkansas 


27 


32 


65 


203 


California 


( 2 ) 


( 2 ) 


28 


76 


Georgia 


53 


65 


135 


127 


Louisiana 


10 


14 


45 


47 


Mississippi 


44 


36 


155 


196 


North Carolina 


21 


39 


62 


85 


Oklahoma 


36 


31 


53 


81 


South Carolina 


28 


59 


62 n 


88 


Tennessee 


18 


23 


61 


144 


Texas 


123 


115 


224 


335 


All Other States 


8 


14 


13 


47 



(') Of 500 pounds gross weight. 
( 2 ) Included in "All Other States." 

Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census, "Cotton Production 
and Distribution," Bulletin 179, Table 3, page 4; Table 4, page 8. 



Prices 

Table LII shows the weighted average price of 
linters in the United States, by years, from 1911 
to 1942. With but few exceptions, the average 
price per pound has been below 5 cents. However, 
there is wide variation, according to grade, in the 
prices of linters. For instance, in 1929, Grade 2 
was 5.3 cents ; Grade 4 was 3.4 cents and Grade 6 
was 2.3 cents per pound. In 1938, Grade 2 was 3.4 
cents, Grade 4 was 2.1 cents, and Grade 6 was 1.3 
cents per pound. 



Value of Production 

The value of our production of linters is small 
in comparison with the value of the cotton crop, 
or with cash income from farm marketings of all 
crops. In fact, the value of linters is generally less 
than 1 per cent of that of all cash income from 
farm marketings of crops. In some states, how- 
ever, such as Texas and Tennessee, it amounted 
in 1941 to 2 per cent and 3 per cent, respectively, 
of the cash income from farm marketings of all 
crops. Table LIII shows the value of cotton linters 
obtained from cottonseed in the United States, by 
years, from 1909 to 1943. 



TABLE LII 
Weighted Average Prices of Linters in the United States 





(Cents per Pound) 




Year Ending 




Year Ending 




July 31 


Price 


July 31 


Price 


1911 


3.3 


1926 


4.3 


1912 


1.9 


1927 


3.0 


1913 


2.5 


1928 


5.1 


1914 


2.3 


1929 


4.5 


1915 


1.5 


1930 


3.2 


1916 


2.9 


1931 


1.8 


1917 


7.1 


1932 


1.3 


1918 


4.9 


1933 


1.3 


1919 


5.0 


1934 


3.4 


1920 


4.2 


1935 


4.3 


1921 


1.7 


1936 


3.9 


1922 


3.5 


1937 


4.2 


1923 


5.9 


1938 


2.1 


1924 


6.9 


1939 


1.8 


1925 


4.9 


1940 


2.8 






1941 


3.6 






1942 


4.5 



Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, "Statistical Abstract of the United States," 
1942, Table 771, page 806; 1932, Table 632, page 656; 1923, Table 221, page 216. 
Weighted average based on gross weight of bale. 

85 



TABLE LIII 

Value of Cotton Linters Obtained in the United States 
(000 Omitted) 



Year Ending 
July 31 


Value 


1909 
1910 


$2,340 
4,770 


1911 
1912 
1913 
1914 
1915 


6,250 
5,150 
7,450 
7,630 
6,150 


1916 
1917 
1918 
1919 
1920 


26,120 
45,193 
26,604 
22,228 
12,336 


1921 
1922 
1923 
1924 
1925 


3,506 

6,619 

17,199 

22,007 

21,268 



Year Ending 






July 31 


Value 


1926 


$23,218 


1927 


16 


684 


1928 


24 


878 


1929 


27 


793 


1930 


20 


149 


1931 


8 


969 


1932 


6 


694 


1933 


5 


931 


1934 


16,490 


1935 


21 


606 


1936 


20 


970 


1937 


29 


739 


1938 


18 


927 


1939 


12 


267 


1940 


18 


920 


1941 


27 


397 


1942 


33 


,521 


1943 


37 


586 



Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census, Cotton Production and 
Distribution Bulletins 180, Table 34, pp. 55-56; 160, Table 43, pp. 64-65. 



Importance of Linter Traffic and Revenue 

The importance of cotton to the railroads of the 
United States, especially those in the Southern and 
Southwestern Regions, is even greater when the 
tonnage and revenue from linters 1 are taken 
into consideration. 

As production of linters has increased, the num- 
ber of carloads and tons handled by the Class I 
railroads and their total revenue have likewise 
increased. In 1928 the Class I railroads carried 
64,000 carloads and 974,000 tons of linters, yield- 
ing $3,272,000 while in 1942 they carried 104,000 
carloads and 2,058,000 tons, yielding $5,876,000. 

Transportation 

The Class I railroads in 1942 originated 37,000 
carloads of linters, of which 23,000, or 62 per cent, 
originated in the Southern Region and 6,300 car- 
loads, or 17 per cent, originated in the Southwest- 
ern Region. The railroads in Southern and South- 
western Regions combined originated 29,300 cars, 
or 79 per cent of the total. 

Southern Region 

Cotton linters originated by Class I railroads in 



1 Tonnage and revenue figures of Class I railroads in- 
clude other articles carried under the same commodity 
heading, such as cotton-mill sweepings, waste, etc., also 
cottonseed hull fiber and shavings. 



the Southern Region increased from 14,000 car- 
loads in 1928 to 16,000 carloads in 1939 and 23,- 
000 carloads in 1942. The average load per car 
originated increased from 14.4 tons in 1928 to 17.7 
in 1939 and 17.9 in 1942. The revenue received 
from all linters carried in this region has con- 
sistently represented more than 1 per cent of the 
revenue from all agricultural products. It was 
1.1 per cent in 1928, 2 per cent in 1939 and 2.6 
per cent in 1942. Cotton linter revenue in Southern 
Region in 1942 was $2,737,000, an increase of $1,- 
500,000 over 1928. 

Southwestern Region 

Cotton linter revenue and traffic is not so large 
for the Southwestern Region as for the Southern 
Region railroads ; however, it does afford them 
substantial traffic and revenue. One reason why 
linter traffic and revenue is less in the Southwest- 
ern Region than in the Southern Region is the 
fact that there are fewer cotton mills in the for- 
mer. Therefore, the railroads in the Southwestern 
Region do not have an opportunity to secure as 
much cotton waste, sweepings, and refuse from 
cotton mills as those-in the Southern Region. Also, 
several railroads, such as the AT&SF, CRI&P, 
and FW&DC, have mileage in the Southwest and 



86 



handle substantial amounts of cotton linters, but 
their statistics are not included by the Interstate 
Commerce Commission in the Southwestern Re- 
gion. 

Class I carriers in the Southwestern Region 
originated 6,300 cars and 140,000 tons in 1942, 
compared with 4,900 cars and 76,000 tons in 1928. 
The revenue on cotton linters carried in 1942 by 
these railroads was $1,010,000, or 1.3 per cent of 
the revenue from all agricultural products, com- 
pared with $689,000, or .7 per cent of all agri- 
cultural-products revenue in 1928. 

Rates 

Cotton linters generally move in carload lots in 
box cars. Linters originated on Class I railroads 
averaged 39,000 pounds per car during the 10- 
year period 1933-42. 

As a result of a general investigation of cotton- 
seed and its products, Docket 17000, Part 8 1 
the following basis on linters was approved for 
application within and from the South: — 20,000- 
pound minimum, 40 per cent; 29,000-pound mini- 
mum, 30 per cent; and 40,000-pound minimum, 
22.5 per cent, of the contemporaneous first-class 
rates. These percentages were the same as sixth 
class, eighth class and tenth class, respectively. 
The Commission in the same decision prescribed 
for application within and from Southwestern ter- 
ritory rates on linters on the basis of 37 per cent 
of first class, minimum weight 20,000 pounds; 
27.5 per cent, minimum weight 29,000 pounds; 
and 21 per cent, minimum weight 40,000 pounds. 
As modified under Ex Parte 115 and 123, the 
rates thus made are in effect today. 

Consumption Compared with Production 

American consumption of linters is in direct 
contrast with consumption of cotton. As previously 
shown, we normally consume about 45 per cent of 
our cotton crop, whereas in the 30 years 1909-38 
we consumed about 77 per cent of all linters pro- 
duced. For the 33-year period 1909-41 linter con- 
sumption was 81 per cent of production, while 
for 1938 it was 104 per cent, for 1941 it was 126 
per cent, and for 1943 it was 115 per cent. Linter 
consumption has steadily increased, from 177,000 
bales in 1909 to 851,000 bales in 1938, and to a 



peak of 1,488,000 bales in 1941. There was a 
slight decline in 1942 and 1943 from the 1941 
peak, as shown in Table L. Due to the war de- 
mand the distribution of all linters is now con- 
trolled by the Commodity Credit Corporation, 
which allocates specific amounts for each type of 
consumer. 

Consumption by States 

The Bureau of the Census has published linter- 
consumption statistics for 20 individual states, 
since 1909. However, to maintain trade and mili- 
tary secrets, some of the chief consuming states 
have been carried under the heading "All Other 
States"; seldom has the Bureau shown separate 
statistics for each of the 20 states at one time. In 
1909, 42 per cent of all linters consumed appeared 
under "All Other States"; in 1917, 77 per cent; 
in 1936, 66 per cent; and in 1941, 78 per cent. 
With location of consumption concealed as to 78 
per cent of all linters in 1941, there is little oppor- 
tunity for informative discussion of individual 
state consumption. Of the states for which indi- 
vidual statistics are shown for 1941, Texas was 
the heaviest consumer, with 58,400 bales or 3.9 
per cent of the total. Illinois and California ranked 
next with 54,300 bales, or 3.7 per cent, and 50,- 
000 bales or 3.4 per cent of the total, respectively. 

Table LIV shows by decades from 1910, the 
consumption of linters by states. 

Exports 

In 1914, the first year for which statistics on 
exports of linters are available 1 we exported 
226,000 bales 2 of linters, or 26 per cent of our 
total production. Exports rose sharply during the 
war years 1915 and 1916, amounting in 1916 to 
36 per cent of production, but dropped to 9 per cent 
in 1918 and 1919. 

During the early 1920's linters exports were 
relatively low in volume. Since 1924 there has been 
considerable fluctuation, but on the whole, the 
trend, has been upward. 

For the years 1924-38 we exported, on the aver- 
age, 20 per cent of our total production. The out- 
break of war in Europe in 1939 raised linters ex- 
ports to 432,000 bales, or 33 per cent of the total 



'203 ICC 177, 1934. 



1 See Table L, page 83. 

2 Bales of 500 pounds gross weight are used in the re- 
mainder of this chapter, unless otherwise specified. 



87 



TABLE LIV 

Consumption of Linters in the United States 

Running Bales (000 Omitted) 

Year Beginning Aug. 1 (') 1910 1920 1930 1940 

United States 207 516 714 1,359 

Alabama 

California 

Connecticut 

Georgia 

Illinois 

Indiana 
Maine 

Massachusetts 
Mississippi 
New Hampshire 
New Jersey 
New York 
North Carolina 
Pennsylvania 
Rhode Island 

South Carolina 

Tennessee 

Texas 

Vermont 

Virginia 

All Other States 

0) Prior to 1914 statistics are for 12 months beginning 
Sept. 1. 

( 2 ) Included in "All Other States". 

( 3 ) Less than 500 bales. 

Source: U. S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Census' 
"Cotton Production and Distribution," Bulletins 179, 175, 173' 
169, 156, 147, 137, and 125. 

production. In 1940, shipping restrictions and na- 
tional-defense requirements caused our exports to 
fall to their lowest mark — 30,000 bales, represent- 
ing- but 2 per cent of the total crop. Since 1940 
linters exports have not been published. 

Exports By Countries of Destination 

Prior to 1924 there were no statistics showing 
the countries to which linters were exported. In 
the 15-year period 1924-38 Germany imported 
more of our linters than any other country, taking 
from one-third to three-fifths of the total, or be- 
tween 50,000 and 150,000 bales per year. France 
and the United Kingdom were next in rank, with 



14 


4 


3 


2 


( 2 ) 


( 2 ) 


32 


59 


14 


13 


10 


4 


14 


15 


15 


15 


8 


55 


52 


66 


3 


8 


9 


10 


( 3 ) 


( 3 ) 


( 2 ) 


( 2 ) 


10 


8 


12 


15 


1 


3 


2 


2 


( 3 ) 


( 3 ) 


( 2 ) 


( 2 ) 


3 


21 


43 


37 


10 


36 


50 


44 


5 


4 


12 


12 


20 


105 


28 


39 


4 


10 


1 


3 


4 


3 


1 


3 


6 


12 


103 


( 2 ) 


11 


17 


16 


46 




( 3 ) 


( 2 ) 




4 


41 


■82 


( 2 ) 


76 


161 


243 


1,002 



France leading slightly. France took between 16,- 
000 (1925) and 64,000 (1936) bales, while Great 
Britain imported from 7,000 (1929) to 80,000 
(1938) bales. 

Commencing with 1938, war trends made them- 
selves felt in our linters exports. In that year 
Germany's imports fell from 119,000 bales in the 
previous year to 55,000 bales. France and England 
increased their takings slightly. The impact of 
hostilities, together with our embargo against Ger- 
many and Lend-Lease to the United Nations, re- 
duced linters exports to Germany to 15,000 bales 
in 1939. France and the United Kingdom increased 
their imports to 206,000 and 137,000 bales, re- 
spectively. 

The Netherlands, Italy, Japan and Belgium, in 
the order named, also have used substantial quan- 
tities of American linters. The combined exports 
to these four countries were usually about one 
half of those to Germany. Canada has been a steady 
user of American linters, but has never taken over 
20,000 bales in any year. 

Imports 

Prior to 1936 linters imports were included 
with cotton waste. Three countries — Russia, 
Brazil and Mexico — supplied practically all of our 
imports from 1936 to 1939. In 1936 imports 
from Russia and Brazil amounted to 20,000 
bales each and from Mexico 12,000 bales. On 
the whole, until 1940 Mexico exported more 
linters to us than did Brazil. However, in 1940 
Brazil sent us 199,000 bales of linters, or 75 per 
cent of our total imports, contrasted with 18,000 
bales from Mexico, 21,000 from Argentina, and 
none from Russia. The impact of war increased 
our 1940 imports to 5 times those of 1936. When 
compared with our linters production and exports, 
however, imports are unimportant. 



88 



Chapter IX 
Conclusions and Comments 



Future Demand for Cotton 

Assuming that the war with Germany will end 
early in 1945 and the war with Japan by 1947, 
the immediate post-war future of cotton appears 
to be as follows : — 

All countries of the world, our country not 
excepted, will suffer from a clothing, industrial 
and household cotton shortage at the end of the 
war. Since 1939 cotton goods have become increas- 
ingly scarce in this country, as regards the civilian 
population. Current belief is that the mills of the 
Low Countries and France have been or will be 
dismantled or destroyed. The mills of Italy are 
located in the industrial region on the Lombardy 
Plain, north of the River Po, where the Germans 
are fighting a delaying defensive action. When 
driven out of Italy, the Germans probably will 
have completed the destruction of the textile mills 
not already bombed. It is to be expected that the 
textile industries of both Germany and Japan will 
have been destroyed by the end of the war. There- 
fore, the Allied nations will be called upon to clothe 
the populations of most of the world. 

Domestic consumers have accumulated de- 
mands for goods and also have money to buy them 
when they become available. It is estimated that 
on June 30, 1944, the holdings of individuals in 
cash, deposits, and government securities amount- 
ed to 130 billion dollars and were increasing at the 
wartime rate of about 35 billion dollars per 
year. 1 

A recent survey 2 revealed that almost 4.5 per 
cent of persons questioned named clothing as their 
first postwar purchase choice. 

In addition to the assured demand for clothing 
and textiles in this and other countries, there will 
be a demand for cotton in various industries that 
use cotton as their base or by-product. Little or 
no difficulty should be encountered during the next 
5 or 6 years in disposing of our cotton crop so long 
as it does not exceed the prewar average. 

While our carry-over has been greater during 
the last few years than ever before, much of it is 
of inferior quality. New uses for such cotton in 
the chemical industry probably will take care of 
most of this inferior stock. There are positive 
indications that, through research conducted by 



1 Securities and Exchange Commission, News Release, 
Sept. 21, 1944. 

2 Fortune Magazine, December, 1943. 



the cotton and other industries as well as the Gov- 
ernment, a greater demand than ever before will 
exist for all kinds of cotton after the war. 

Leading cotton industrialists have estimated 
that favorable world conditions for foreign trade 
could achieve a possible world consumption of 
40,000,000 to 50,000,000 bales annually, contrasted 
with a previous peak of 30,000,000 bales. Just 
before World War II, the average per-capita world 
consumption of cotton was approximately 6.3 
pounds, compared with the 1934-38 per-capita con- 
sumption of 24.6 pounds in the United States. 

Estimated Crop Needs 

Assuming that the war with Germany will end 
early in 1945 and the war with Japan by 1947, 
there will probably be a need for a crop of 12,000,- 
000 or 13,000,000 bales in this country each year 
through 1949. After that, we will need an export 
demand larger than the 1935-39 average exports 
of 5,300,000 bales of cotton in order to market a 
crop of this or larger size. 

Because the price of American cotton has been 
artificially supported through government inter- 
vention, our cotton is gradually meeting with in- 
creasingly serious competition from other fibers. 
After the close of the war American cotton will 
have much difficulty meeting competition from 
other cottons in world markets and from synthetic 
fibers in this country unless its price is quickly 
and substantially reduced or unless it is subsidized. 

One of our principal competitors for world cot- 
ton trade in the postwar era will be Brazil. Re- 
ports indicate that Brazil has increased its cotton 
acreage from 2,400,000 acres (average 1930-34) 
to 6,700,000 acres in 1940. During the 16 years 
1923-38 Middling 15/16" cotton at New Orleans 
averaged 14.98 cents per pound. In the same peri- ■ 
od Brazilian Type 5 (a comparable grade) at Sao 
Paulo averaged 15.51 cents per pound. Since Pearl 
Harbor American cotton has been from 6.47 cents 
to 11.74 cents per pound higher than Brazilian 
cotton. 

On August 1, 1944, the average spot price of 
Middling 15/16" cotton at the 10 designated mar- 
kets was 21.78 cents, compared with 25 cents per 
pound for rayon staple fiber. The Federal Govern- 
ment has guaranteed for 2 years after peace has 
been proclaimed a price on cotton based upon 92.5 
per cent of parity. Parity on August 1 , 1944, was 



90 



21.8 cents per pound. With a Government-sup- 
ported price of 20 cents or higher after the war 
American cotton would be unable to meet foreign 
competition in world markets without subsidy. 

Rayon staple fiber at 25 cents per pound is al- 
most as cheap as cotton at 21 cents per pound when 
the mill waste of from 10 to 20 per cent in cotton 
is considered. Therefore, cotton cannot fully com- 
pete with domestic rayon without a price reduc- 
tion. Rayon production is man-controlled and has 
thus far been without Government price inter- 
vention. It is entirely probable that expanding 
rayon production will cause further price reduc- 
tions, and 1949 may well see a 20-cent price for 
rayon staple fiber. 

Since the chances of disposing of a crop of the 
1935-39 average size of 12,800,000 bales after the 
world returns to normal peacetime conditions de- 
pend upon the uncertain prospects of increasing 
either domestic use or foreign takings of our cot- 
ton, there is no reason to believe that production 
above this level would be encouraged or can be 
expected. On the other hand, world need for our 
cotton for military and postwar rehabilitation pur- 
poses should dispose of an annual crop of this size 
and thereby encourage its continued production, 
up to about 1949. 

Estimated Tonnage for Movement 

Subject to normal weather conditions, it is esti- 
mated that there will be available for movement 
by all forms of transportation in the first normal 
postwar year and for the succeeding 2 or 3 years 
approximately 12,500,000 bales, equivalent to 3,- 
125,000 tons of cotton. The origin and termina- 
tion of this traffic geographically should be as 
follows : 

ORIGINATE 

Virginia 8 

North Carolina 162 

South Carolina 187 

Georgia 225 

Alabama 233 

Florida 5 

Tennessee 125 

Mississippi 475 

Total South 1,420 

Louisiana 150 

Arkansas 375 

Oklahoma 175 

Missouri _100 

Texas 700 

Total Southwest 1,500 



Arizona • 50 

California 125 

New Mexico 25 

Total Far West 200 

All Others 5 

Grand Total 3,125 

TERMINATE 

Virginia 60 

North Carolina 710 

South Carolina 550 

Georgia 500 

Alabama 325 

Tennessee 225 

Mississippi 80 

Total South 2,450 

Connecticut 30 

Maine , 40 

Massachusetts 150 

New Hampshire 45 

New Jersey 10 

New York 50 

Pennsylvania 10 

Rhode Island 45 

Total East and New England 380 

California 10 

Illinois 10 

Texas 2 °0 

All Others 75 

Grand Total 3,125 

The estimate as to cotton originations by states 
is based upon the tonnage originated in each state 
in the 3 years 1940-42. Estimated terminations by 
states are based upon the consumption perform- 
ances of the states during the same 3-year period. 

It is useless at this time to try to conjecture 
what may be the situation as to cotton after 1949. 
It is impossible to foresee the price of American 
cotton in relation to foreign cotton and to the 
synthetic fibers. Moreover, it cannot be known now 
whether the government will continue its artificial 
support of cotton-price levels or will initiate a 
cotton program of more farseeing helpfulness. 

Collateral Problems Affecting the Railroads 

Several matters of considerable significance to 
railroads concerned are brought out in this report. 

For example, there has been a decline in cotton 
acreage from 47,000,000 acres in 1926 to 36,000,- 
000 acres in 1932 and to about 22,000,000 acres in 
1941 and 1942. What has been done, and what 
will be done, with the 25,000,000 acres of land thus 
diverted from cotton? Land that is not used or is 
used below its maximum efficiency is a community 
waste and challenges the railroads concerned to 
help find ways to make it more productive. 

From what sources of income are the taxes and 
other charges on this land being paid? The sta- 



91 



tistics indicate that most of it is of relatively in- 
ferior productivity. Our studies of corn indicate 
that a substantial part of it has been diverted to 
corn, probably for domestic feeding, showing a 
low yield in bushels per acre. Land that is not at 
least self-supporting is a drain upon the purchas- 
ing power of the community. 

Furthermore, what has become of the people 
who formerly found employment on this 25,000,000 
acres of cotton land ? The statistics as to decrease 
in the number of cotton farms and increase in the 
average size of farms indicate that they were 
mostly small operators, and other considerations 
suggest that they were largely tenant farmers. 
From what source are they now deriving a liveli- 
hood, and what has been the effect upon purchas- 
ing power and consumption in the South? There 
is undoubtedly a direct connection between this de- 
cline in acreage and the decline in American cotton 
exports. The link is in price mechanisms ; in order 
to improve domestic prices we sacrified a large 
part of our export market and encouraged foreign 
competition in cotton growing. This situation is a 
matter of the utmost importance for the long-run 
future of cotton. 

We cannot go on producing an annual average 
(1935-39) of 12,800,000 bales unless we can either 
find ways to increase our annual average (1935- 
39) domestic consumption of 6,800,000 bales, or 
else find increased export outlets to absorb the 
difference. Otherwise we face the problem of a 
carry-over piling up, as it did during the period 
mentioned, at the rate of about 700,000 bales per 
year or to the extent of 3,500,000 bales during the 
5-year period. Eventually, the pressure of such a 
carry-over either breaks the price or leads to gov- 
ernment intervention. 

One way to increase domestic consumption, as 
mentioned in the report, is to promote the use of 
cotton fabric for packaging the cotton crop itself. 
Other new or expended outlets for cotton are being 
sought by agencies representing the cotton indus- 
try. Their activities are timely, because per-capita 
consumption of cotton in the 5 years 1936-40 was 
substantially what it was 25 years earlier, while 
other fibers show increases in this respect. 

Unless a better balance can be struck between 
production, on the one hand, and domestic con- 
sumption and exports, on the other, by increasing 
the latter, the only practical alternative is to re- 



duce acreage and production to bring about the 
balance ? What then is to become of this additional 
land taken out of cotton ? What is to become of the 
people now employed thereon and in the handling 
of the cotton it now produces ? The answers to these 
questions are important to the traffic of the rail- 
roads concerned. 

We can maintain and expand our export outlets 
despite increased production abroad in one of two 
ways, either by government subsidy of exports or 
by producing cotton at a cost which will enable us 
to compete in world markets. The former is an 
expedient and not a real solution. Such action by 
one country usually leads to similar action by com- 
peting countries, and is economically unsound in 
addition. 

There are indications in this study that the 
South is on the way toward achievement of the 
second method. Among these indications are the 
decrease in number of farms and in cotton acreage, 
coupled with increasing use of fertilizer and a 
marked increase in yield per acre. The Southern 
cotton grower seems to be learning how to produce 
cotton more cheaply. He has taken his least-pro- 
ductive land out of cotton cultivation and concen- 
trated his efforts and fertilizer on the more-pro- 
ductive land. Since it costs no more to prepare, seed 
and cultivate a high-yield than a low-yield acre, 
this means that the South is reducng its unit cost 
per pound of cotton produced. 

One further step along this line which might be 
taken to advantage is suggested by a comparison 
of the 1940 average yield of 749 pounds per acre 
in California with the average yields of 576 pounds 
in New Mexico, 375 pounds in South Carolina, 240 
pounds in Mississippi, 184 pounds in Texas, and 
253 pounds for the Cotton States as a whole. There 
seems to be no good reason why what has been ac- 
complished in California could not be paralleled 
in other states by the same methods as in Cali- 
fornia, and probably at cheaper cost. 

Comparison of the ratio of tons of cotton han- 
dled by railroads to production of cotton with the 
average farm price of cotton shows a close cor- 
respondence of trends. The indication is that the 
higher the market price the less is the tendency to 
divert cotton from the rails. An important sug- 
gestion to be derived from this showing is that 
activities which promote good prices for cotton 
may be a profitable substitute for rate reductions. 



92 



Appendix 
Summary of Pertinent Federal Laws 



Cotton Futures Act, 1916 

This act and its amendments in effect give the 
Secretary of Agriculture jurisdiction over cotton- 
futures transactions. This purpose is accomplished 
by levying upon such transactions a tax at the 
prohibitive rate of 2 cents per pound, but provid- 
ing exemptions from the tax for transactions con- 
forming to conditions specified in the act or regu- 
lations to be established by the Secretary of Ag- 
riculture. Among such conditions or regulations 
are that : 

1) the contract of sales must be in writing and 
bear the signatures of the parties. 

2) it must specify the basis grade of the cotton 
according to standards established by the Secre- 
tary of Agriculture. 

3) the cotton must be of tenderable quality 
according to specifications in the act, and the dif- 
ferences above or below the basis grade must be 
determined as provided in the act. 

Exemption from the tax also is provided for 
specific contracts calling for cotton of a definite 
grade and staple at a definite price per pound to 
be delivered on a definite date. 

The Secretary of Agriculture is authorized to 
designate bona-fide spot markets for the purpose 
of determining the differentials above or below the 
basis grade as mentioned under 3) above. 

Cotton Standards Act, 1923 

This act gave the Secretary of Agriculture juris- 
diction over the physical standards of cotton. He 
was authorized to establish and promulgate stand- 
ards of grade, color, staple length, staple strength, 
and such other qualities as may practicably be 
standardized. 

He also was authorized to license approved per- 
sons as samplers, and upon request to have cotton 
samples graded, to have cotton matched against 
samples, and to have cotton samples taken. 

The use of non-official standards and non-stand- 
ard grade names was forbidden. 

(The portion of this act giving the Secretary 
authority to establish and promulgate standards of 
cotton was incorporated in the Cotton Futures 
Act of 1916.) 

Agricultural Marketing Act. 1929 

The declared policy of the act was, to "promote 
the effective merchandising of agricultural com- 



modities in interstate and foreign commerce, so 
that the industry of agriculture would be placed on 
a basis of economic equity with other industries, 
and to that end to protect, control and stabilize 
the currents of interstate and foreign commerce 
in the marketing of agricultural commodities and 
food products 1) by minimizing speculation, 2) by 
preventing inefficient and wasteful methods of 
distribution, and 3) by encouraging the organiza- 
tion of producers into effective associations or 
groups under their own control for greater unity 
of effect in marketing and by promoting the estab- 
lishment and financing of a firm marketing system 
of producer-owned and producer-controlled co- 
operative associations and other agencies".* 

The President was authorized to appoint a Fed- 
eral Farm Board. The Board was authorized to 
establish advisory commodity committees of 7 
members each, and stabilization corporations and 
clearing-house associations to make loans to co- 
operatives and stabilization corporations; and to 
enter into agreements for the insurance of co- 
operatives against loss through price decline. 

Under the act the Federal Farm Board in 1929 
established a loan rate of 16 cents on cotton ; in 
1930 a loan plan was instituted permitting the 
farmer to borrow amounts equivalent to 90 per 
cent of the prevailing market price. 

By Executive Order No. 6084 of March 27, 1933, 
the President declared that the Federal Farm 
Board would be known thereafter as the Farm 
Credit Administration. This agency is still func- 
tioning. 

Agricultural Adjustment Act, 1933 

This act authorized the Secretary of Agricul- 
ture to create in the Department of Agriculture 
a unit to be known as the Agricultural Adjust- 
ment Administration. It further authorized him to 
license and tax processors of cotton and other 
farm products. The revenue from this tax was to 
be returned to the farmers as rental or benefit 
payments, in return for which the farmers by 
agreement or other voluntary methods would 
withdraw land from production in order to reduce 
the surplus. 

Under this act the Agricultural Adjustment Ad- 
ministration made effective a processing tax of 
4.2 cents per pound net weight and established a 



94 



loan rate of 10 cents per pound on cotton during 
the 1933 season. 

The act was declared unconstitutional by the de- 
cision of the U. S. Supreme Court in the Hoosac 
Mills Case in 1936 (See Bankhead Act). 

Bankhead Cotton Act, 1934 

This act provided that, for the 1934 season, 
10,000,000 bales (500 pounds net weight, equiva- 
lent to 10,460,251 bales of 478 pounds net weight) 
of cotton could be ginned and marketed free of a 
tax that was fixed in the act as 50 per cent of the 
average central market price of %" Middling spot 
cotton, but not less than 5 cents per pound. 

Exempted from this tax were cotton of l 1 /-/' 
and greater staple length, cotton produced on 
land owned by Government-owned agricultural ex- 
perimental stations, cotton harvested on each farm 
not to exceed its allotment; and cotton harvested, 
prior to the crop year 1934. The processing tax on 
cotton of 4.2 cents per pound net weight levied in 
the Agricultral Adjustment Act of 1933 was re- 
tained. 

Under the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1933 
crop-control measures were to be voluntary. Not 
all growers cooperated and, because of the 10-cent 
, loan on cotton in 1933, some non-cooperating grow- 
ers increased their acreage, and other producers 
were tempted to go into cotton production. 

As a result, the Bankhead Act was designed to 
use Federal powers to hold total production to a 
fixed national quota. It was to be operative only 
for the 1934 season, but it contained a provision 
authorizing the President to continue it for an- 
other year if necessary to meet the emergency in 
cotton production and marketing. The President 
authorized continuance of the act for the 1935 
season. 

Production-control programs under the Agri- 
cultural Adjustment Act were terminated follow- 
ing the decision of the U. S. Supreme Court in the 
Hoosac Mills case on January 6, 1936. Congress 
repealed the Bankhead Cotton Act on February 
10, 1936, except Section 24, which related to new 
and extended uses for cotton. 

Commodity Exchange Act, 1936 

This act amended the Grain Futures Act of 
1922 (similar to the Cotton Futures Act of 1916, 
which see) so that the title of the act as amended 



might be cited as the "Commodity Exchange Act". 
An important provision of the Grain Futures Act 
was the power given to place a limit upon purely 
speculative trading on the part of any person or 
firm. It provided also for the licensing of com- 
mission firms accepting orders from the public and 
prohibited, under severe penalty, the bucketing 
of customers' orders, the making of "wash sales", 
and "fictitious trades", and cheating and fraud in 
connection with the handling of customers' orders. 

The act further amended the Grain Futures 
Act by adding cotton, rice, mill feeds, butter, eggs, 
and Irish potatoes to the commodities under the 
act. It declared excessive speculation in commodi- 
ties to be an undue and unnecessary burden on 
interstate commerce. It therefore authorized estab- 
lishment of the Commodity Exchange Commission, 
to consist of the Secretaries of Agriculture and 
Commerce, and the Attorney General, and gave 
the Commission power, by order, after due notice 
and opportunity for hearing, to proclaim and fix 
such limits on the amount of futures trading which 
may be done on contract markets as the Commis- 
sion finds necessary to diminish, eliminate, or pre- 
vent such burden. 

This act does not prevent bona-fide hedging, nor 
the exchange of futures in connection with cash 
commodity transactions, nor exchange of futures 
for cash commodities. 

Agricultural Adjustment Act, 1938 

This act provided for a minimum national al- 
lotment of 10,000,000 bales of cotton, to be pro- 
duced on from 26,000,000 to 26,500,000 acres. 
Acreage allotments were to be divided among 
states and among counties in each state on the 
basis of 1933-37 acreage planted, including acre- 
age diverted under regulations of the Agricultural 
Adjustment Administration. Alloted acreage was 
to be not less than 60 per cent of the 1937 acreage, 
plus 60 per cent of acreage diverted in 1937. The 
farmer might sell his crop without penalty pro- 
vided he used no more than his alloted acreage. 

If the cotton supply (crop plus carry-over) ex- 
ceeded normal (18,200,000 bales) by as much as 
7 per cent, marketing quotas were to be effective 
for the next year if approved in a referendum by 
two-thirds of the growers. Quotas for 1938 were 
to go into effect if similarly approved. 



95 



Payments to farmers, conditioned upon soil 
conservation, were to be made on a "parity basis". 
Price-adjustment payments also were to be made 
on the 1937 crop. 

The act provided that the Commodity Credit 
Corporation was to be used as an agency for cot- 
ton loans under the act, which were authorized on 
the basis of a minimum of 52 per cent of the 
parity price. 

The act authorized the Secretary of Agriculture 



to make and prosecute claims to the Interstate 
Commerce Commission relative to transportation 
rates, charges, etc., on farm products, also to as- 
sist co-operative associations in making com- 
plaints to the commission. It also authorized ap- 
propriations for the establishment of regional ag- 
ricultural research laboratories to develop new 
uses and markets for agricultural products and by- 
products, and for the promotion of new foreign 
markets. 






96 



Glossary 



ACREAGE — Unless otherwise specified, "acre- 
age" refers to the area harvested, which is gen- 
erally considerably smaller than the area planted 
or the area in cultivation at some specified date 
(such as July 1) in the growing season. 

AMERICAN — The terms "American" and 
"American cotton" are used in the commercial 
sense and refer to the United States or to cotton 
produced in the United States. 

ANY-QUANTITY RATE— A rate applied irre- 
spective of the quantity shipped. 

BALE — Unless otherwise indicated, "bale" 
when referring to American cotton means a run- 
ning bale. (For which see definition below.) When 
referring to foreign cotton, it means a statistical 
bale containing 478 pounds of cotton. 

BALE, GIN — A term used to describe the first 
baling of cotton. Often spoken of as a flat or un- 
compressed bale. 

BALE, PHYSICAL— Units without regard to 
weight. 

BALE, ROUND — A cylindrical bale, weighing 
approximately 250 pounds gross weight or 247 
pounds net weight. 

BALE, RUNNING — A term used to indicate 
the actual bale as it moves in channels of trade, 
irrespective of weight, except that round bales 
are usually counted as half bales. 

CAROLINA TERRITORY— This term com- 
prises North and South Carolina and southern 
Virginia. 

CARRY-OVER— Total stocks of ginned cotton 
on hand at the beginning (August 1) or end (July 
31) of a cotton-marketing season. 

CENTRAL CONCENTRATION MARKET— A 
market where cotton is concentrated into even- 
running lots for distribution to domestic consum- 
ers and exporters. 

CITY CROP — Cotton composed of rebaled sam- 
ples, sweeping, and pickings from cotton damaged 
by weather, fire, etc. 

COASTWISE RECEIPTS AND SHIPMENTS 
— These terms apply to traffic receiving a carriage 
between two ports of the United States over the 
ocean, the Gulf of Mexico, or important arms of 
the oceans or the Gulf of Mexico, with the excep- 
tion of Chesapeake Bay and Puget Sound local- 
ities, and also to traffic with Alaska, Hawaii, and 
Puerto Rico. Traffic between Great Lakes ports and 



seacoast ports is also termed "coastwise". 

CONSUMPTION— The terms "consumption" 
and "mill consumption" as here used refer to the 
quantity of cotton processed in manufacturing 
establishments, mainly in the production of cot- 
ton yarns. 

COTTON — Ginned or lint cotton, not including 
linters (the residual fibers removed from cotton 
seed at oil mills, see definition) . 

COTTON, COMMERCIAL— Cotton that enters 
or will eventually enter commercial channels. It 
does not include large quantities of cotton in India 
and China and smaller quantities in other coun- 
tries which is grown for consumption on hand 
spindles or in other ways used in or about the 
household. 

COTTON, UPLAND— A term applied to all 
varieties of the Gossypium hirsutum species of 
cotton to distinguish it from cotton of different 
species such as American Egyptian and Egyptian 
(G. barbadense) and Indian (G. herbaceum). All 
American cotton is Upland cotton except small 
quantities of American Egyptian and Sea-Island. 

COTTON FARM — The 1930 Census classified 
cotton farms as farms on which 40 per cent or 
more of the total income is derived from cotton. 
The 1940 census revised this to mean any farm 
that grows cotton. 

COTTON MARKET— A place where cotton is 
offered for sale. 

CROP LAND — All acreage available for culti- 
vated crops. 

CROP YEAR — The year beginning August 1 
in which the bulk of the specified crop is harvested, 
regardless of when it was planted. It corresponds 
to the cotton-marketing season generally used in 
cotton statistics and by the cotton trade in the 
United States and in most other countries. 

EGYPT — Approximately 97 per cent of the 
area of Egypt is desert waste, of no agricultural 
value. The production area is confined to the val- 
ley (Upper Egypt) and the delta (Lower Egypt) 
of the Nile River. 

EXPORTS — Unless otherwise indicated, the 
term is applied to total exports rather than to net 
exports, in which adjustments have been made for 
imports or re-imports. 

EXPORT MARKET— A market where cotton 
is sold for export. 



98 



FARM — All the land on which some agricul- 
tural operations are performed by one person, 
either by his own labor alone or with the assist- 
ance of members of his household or hired em- 
ployees. When a landowner has one or more ten- 
ants, renters, croppers, or managers, the land 
operated by each is considered a farm. 

FARM OPERATOR — A person who operates 
a farm, either performing the labor himself or 
directly supervising it. For all practical purposes, 
the number of farm operators is identical with the 
number of farms. Farm operators are classified 
as "white" and "non-white". "White" includes 
Mexicans, and "non-white" includes Negroes, In- 
dians, Chinese, Japanese, and other non-white 
classes. 

FARM LAND — Acreage so designated includes 
considerable areas of land not actually under cul- 
tivation and some land not even used for pasture 
or grazing. However, large areas of timberland or 
other non-agricultural land held by an operator of 
a farm as a separate business, and not used for 
pasture or grazing or for any other farm purpose 
are not included. 

FOREIGN — The terms "foreign" and "foreign 
cotton" are used for convenience to indicate all 
countries other than the United States and all 
cotton other than American cotton. 

FUTURES MARKET— A place where cotton is 
bought and sold for future delivery on a rigidly 
standardized contract. The market is formed by 
an association and is closed to everyone except 
members. 

HEDGING— The holders of cotton, whether 
merchants, cooperative associations or individual 
growers, run a risk of loss from price changes be- 
tween the time they acquire ownership of cotton 
and the time they sell it. However, the futures 
market offers them a form of insurance against 
such losses in a process called hedging. A hedge 
has been denned as "a sale or purchase of a con- 
tract for future delivery against a previous pur- 
chase or sale of an equal quantity of the same com- 
modity or an equivalent quantity of another com- 
modity that has a parallel price movement and 
where it is expected that the transaction in the 
contract market will be cancelled by an offset 
transaction at the time the contemplated spot 
transaction is completed and before the future con- 
tract matures" 1 . A hedge is an operation in the 



futures market the reverse of a transaction in 
spot cotton. A merchant who has bought spot cot- 
ton may hedge his purchase by selling a contract 
to deliver that same amount of cotton at some fu- 
ture time, say, 4 months ahead. He later disposes 
of his spot cotton, regardless of how prices may 
change in the meantime ; if spot prices are good he 
may sell before the 4 months have elapsed. 
When he sells his spot cotton he buys a futures 
contract for the delivery of cotton to match the 
contract he had previously sold. The hedge is then 
completed. Spinners hedge by the reverse of the 
merchants' transactions. 

The cotton crop comes on the market during 
the course of a few months. Those who hold cot- 
ton to release it as needed for consumption hedge 
their purchases in the futures market, buying 
back the hedges as they sell the spot cotton. The 
balance wheel in the market is formed by outside 
buyers and sellers who have no spot cotton but 
deal only in futures. Hedging is intended to pro- 
tect against price changes, whereas speculation 
seeks to profit from price changes. 

HOG-ROUND — The purchase or sale of a farm- 
er's entire cotton crop at a fixed price without 
regard to grade or staple length. 

IMPORTS — Unless otherwise indicated, the 
term applies to total imports rather than to net 
imports, in which adjustments have been made for 
exports or re-exports. 

LINTERS — The short fiber or fuzz adhering to 
the seed after ginning. They are pressed in bales 
similar to gin bales of cotton, averaging approxi- 
mately 600 pounds each. 

LOCAL OR PRIMARY MARKETS— Markets 
where growers take their cotton to sell ; they may 
be local, country, primary, wagon, or farmers' 
markets. 

MERCHANDISE EXPORTS— All commodities 
exported except gold and silver. 

MISSISSIPPI VALLEY— The territory lying 
generally between the Mississippi River and the 
line of the Gulf, Mobile and Ohio Railroad from 
Mobile, Ala., to Jackson, Tenn., and connection 
northward to Paducah, Ky. 

MOZAMBIQUE — Also known as Portuguese 
East Africa, on the Indian Ocean and south of 
Tanganyika (which see). 



1 U. S. Department of Agriculture, "1926, Cotton Prices 
and Markets", Dr. A. B. Cox, p. 27. 



99 



PRICE, PARITY — A price (for cotton) arrived 
at by multiplying the average farm price from 
August 1909 through July 1914 (12.4 cents) by 
the index of prices paid by farmers, includng in- 
terest and taxes (1910-14 equals 1.00). 

PRICE, SPOT — The price of actual cotton for 
prompt delivery in the market where the price is 
quoted. 

REGIONS, Southern, Southwestern, etc. — Ap- 
plied to groups of railroads as so classified by the 
I.C.C. 

SEASON — The terms "season" and "marketing 
season" as here used generally refer to the 12 
months from August 1 to July 31. 

SOUTHEAST— All the territory in the South 
not embraced in the Carolinas and Mississippi 
Valley territories. 

SOUTHERN REGION— One of eight roughly 
territorial groups to which various railroads have 
been assigned by the I.C.C. for statistical purposes. 

SOUTHWEST or SOUTHWESTERN TERRI- 
TORY — Embraces all of Arkansas, Oklahoma, 
Louisiana west of the Mississippi River, southern 
Missouri, and Texas except the western and south- 
western portions of the state. 

SOUTHWESTERN REGION— One of eight 



roughly territorial groups to which various rail- 
roads have been assigned by the I.C.C. for sta- 
tistical purposes. 

SPOT MARKET— A market where actual cot- 
ton that is "on the spot", i. e., spot cotton, is 
bought and sold. It may not be on the spot in 
that particular market, but the seller has it under 
his control at some place. 

SPINNERS' MARKET— a market in or near a 
mill center where the manufacturer obtains his 
cotton. 

SUNDRIES — The terms "sundries" or "sundry 
cotton" or "sundry growths" refer to all cotton 
other than cotton produced in the United States, 
India, or Egypt. 

SUPPLY — The carry-over on August 1 plus 
production or ginnings from August 1 to July 31. 
In the case of American cotton, ginnings also in- 
clude the "city crop." 

TANGANYIKA— British (formerly German) 
colony in East Africa, on the Indian Ocean and 
south of Uganda (which see). 

UGANDA — A British Protectorate in the ex- 
treme northwest portion of British East Africa 
and south of the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan. 

YIELD — The terms "yield" or "yield per acre" 
refer to the net weight of lint or ginned cotton 
produced per acre harvested. 



Date Due 



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